Day of Caring mobilizes help

By: By Nolan Gilmour -

LAURINBURG — Along with city of Laurinburg beautification workers, volunteers from St. Andrews University were able to assist in the planting of 1,500 plants at the intersection of South Main Street and the 15/401 bypass for the annual United Way Day of Caring.

The event had young and old volunteer along with Scotland County organizations, local leaders, and business leaders assist with projects at many of the 19 nonprofit organizations that United Way supports.

“We had another great turnout, which is just a great indication for the support United Way has for the county as well as the people who truly care and want o give back to the community,” said Kevin Patterson, who has served as president of the United Way of Scotland County for the last three years.

In total, Friday’s event had more than 140 registered volunteers. Prior to the day”s start, participants enjoyed breakfast at Laurinburg Presbyterian Church where event organizers recognized and thanked all involved.

“Volunteerism doesn’t come easy and it takes you committing yourself, whether its coaching, out here with United Way, or volunteering during a storm. You have to have the drive to do it naturally and that’s what folks need to see,” said Darwin Williams, Laurinburg police chief.

The event had volunteers completing tasks for 13 of the county’s 19 agencies, which saw individuals planting flowers, filling food donations bags, spending time with animals at the Scotland County Humane society, and installing fire alarms.

“This is a great way to get out in the community and to do something to improve our community and its wonderful to be a part of this group of people serving together,” said Tim Beach-Verhey, SAU dean of students, who has volunteered for the event the last two years.”

Friday’s volunteer efforts with SAU joining members of the community for the Day of Caring were just one of the multiple times students, coaches, staff, and faculty have given a helping hand to the community.

“It’s just good to see people from St. Andrews and people that work for the city have some pride in Laurinburg and help us beautify it,” said Michael Mandeville, Laurinburg’s community development director.

According to the university, students volunteer throughout Scotland County for a day of service on Martin Luther King Jr. Day, as well as class helping with organization like Project INASMUCH, which provides snacks for children over the weekend who might otherwise go without.

“I think this is a good way to get out in the community an get involved and it’s a good way to bring everyone together,” said Robbie Hill, SAU assistant men’s soccer coach.

Also during the Day of Caring, the Scotland County/Laurinburg Area Chamber of Commerce presented the Highlander Award to those in the community that take pride in the county and their neighborhoods.

This year’s winners included, Pioneer Hi Bred, the industrial winner; Purcell Funeral Home & Insurance, the commercial winner; Optimist Club of Laurinburg, the non-profit winner; and Covington Street Elementary, the school category winner;

The residential winners were Margaret Brigman of East Laurinburg, Howard and Millie English of Gibson, Chesley McQueen of Laurel Hill, Larry and Sue Schulz of Laurinburg, and Doris Littlejohn of Laurinburg.

Nolan Gilmour | Laurinburg Exchange Conor Maloney, SAU men’s soccer graduate assistant coach, gets his hands dirty while planting for the annual United Way Day of Caring on Friday. Gilmour | Laurinburg Exchange Conor Maloney, SAU men’s soccer graduate assistant coach, gets his hands dirty while planting for the annual United Way Day of Caring on Friday.
More than 140 volunteer

By Nolan Gilmour

Reach Nolan Gilmour at 910-506-3171

Reach Nolan Gilmour at 910-506-3171