By Susan Motander
Every year hundreds of people in many cities volunteer to make a difference. It is a long-standing tradition here in Monrovia. But in Monrovia people work to make a difference on more than just one day, that is the Monrovia way.
Last Saturday, more than 80 people came out to help clean up three homes in town. The Neighborhood and Business Services Division of the City of Monrovia is responsible for code enforcement, which means they notify residents and business owners when they are in violation of the local municipal code. On occasion these violations are the result of a lack of yard maintenance because of the resident’s age or income. Regularly the efforts of the volunteers on Make a Difference Day come to the aid of such residents.
The city has another program that helps called Care for Your Neighbor. With the assistance of the San Gabriel Valley Volunteer Center and help from the city Public Works Department and the local code enforcements officers along with other volunteer groups the homes of three local residents were brought up to code last Saturday.
Many of the more than 80 volunteers who turned out on Saturday were middle to high school students from the First Evangelical Church youth groups. According to their pastor, Nick Melazzo, the youngsters were volunteering as part of their efforts to raise money for a non-profit organization called She Has A Name.
The young people were not paid for their efforts last weekend, but they are asking the community to support their work project by donating to She Has a Name, an organization that rescues girls from poverty-driven prostitution in Nairobi, Kenya. The Monrovia young people have been working for the last two years to raise fund to support Florah, a 16-year-old, who is now back in school and earning straight A report cards. To help these youngsters with their work to support Florah, go to fecyouth.com
To help the San Gabriel Valley Volunteer Center with support or time, go to vcsgv.org