Times News: United Way Week of Caring 2019

KINGSPORT – More than 1,000 volunteers completed 133 projects for 26 nonprofits during the 27th Annual Regional United Way Week of Caring, June 17-21, according to the United Way of Greater Kingsport. The financial impact of this year’s Week of Caring is estimated at nearly $150,000 for a cumulative 6,000 hours of work.


The collaborative weeklong volunteer project kicked off June 17 with a region-wide breakfast hosted and sponsored by Bank of Tennessee. The meeting, attended by United Way of Bristol, United Way of Washington County TN, United Way of Elizabethton/Carter County, United Way of Greater Kingsport and volunteers, is designed to start the Week of Caring on a positive note and encourage United Ways to remember their mission to serve.


“Week of Caring is an opportunity for companies to go out and spend a day volunteering and making a visible difference in the community,” said Becca Sutphen, UWGK Community Impact Director.


“These projects mean so much to our agencies each year and it is so rewarding to witness the volunteerism in our region band together to improve lives! United Way of Greater Kingsport and our member agencies are grateful for the volunteerism exemplified in Greater Kingsport.”


Volunteers from local companies and organizations provided maintenance services, landscaping, painting and several other projects. A Domtar team, for example, worked to repair a storage building floor at CASA for Kids Inc., while AEP Appalachian Power employees got their hands dirty landscaping at Holston Counseling.


Elsewhere, Brown Edwards and Brock volunteers did some spring cleaning at Literacy Council and Hope House (respectively); City of Kingsport employees painted and weeded at Small Miracles Therapeutic Equestrian Center; First Tennessee Bank assisted with a storage clean out; Luttrell Staffing moved and organized storage units at Sullivan County Imagination Library; and Eastman Credit Union and Kingsport Chamber teams cleaned and organized space at Habitat Restore and Hope Haven. And the list goes on.


Eastman Chemical Company employees, this year’s largest project team, took on multiple projects at nearly 20 agencies throughout the Week of Caring. One of the largest they tackled was at Girls Inc., where work included general landscaping maintenance, cleaning of gutters and windows, installation of a surveillance system, interior cleaning, the construction of a new playhouse for the girls in their playground and much more - the impact of which will be felt for years to come.


United Way of Greater Kingsport Board President Brian Miller said, “I want to give a special thank you to all of our volunteers for their work throughout this week’s projects. Every year our Week of Caring shows how dedicated our community is to giving back and this year is no different. It was an amazing experience for me to be able to visit multiple agencies throughout the week and see the difference that was being made. I truly appreciate each and every volunteer that was a part of this year’s Week of Caring.”