Travis and Alex Brobst along with Tim Wyatt painting the boys' restroom at Huachuca Elementary.

Four schools in Sierra Vista as well as the walkway between Rothery Center and Veteran’s Memorial Park were spruced up on Oct. 24 for National Make a Difference Day by members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and friends.

Jennifer Damato, Make a Difference Day coordinator, highlighted their successes: “We had a lot of participation and accomplished a lot. We made a difference for many people today and it felt good!”

Two of the projects were painting rooms at two elementary schools. At Huachuca Elementary four bathrooms were painted.

“We split up,” said Tim Wyatt, a participant, “girls to paint the girls’ bathrooms and boys to paint the boys’ bathrooms. We picked names for our teams—The guys were ‘The Drip and Slip Company’ and the girls were ‘The Splatters,’” he laughed.

At Bella Vista Elementary, school nurse, Lisa Kreig’s office and bathroom were painted a dark Autumn tan color. Jaci Seiler stated, “We had a good time with our seven volunteers brightening up a long over-due task.”

At Joyce Clark Middle School 10 people gathered together to pull weeds and pick up rocks and trash. Morgan Evershed commented on the project, “We cleaned up the track, making it look much better. It was nice to perform service for the community.”

Emily Wilde felt the same way helping at Town and Country Elementary, “It felt good to make the school grounds look better,” she said.

Mike Squires and his family helped clean up the walkway by the Rothery Center. They pulled weeds, cut down trees, cleared up brush, and restored the rock garden. Mike opined, “It was a lot of work, but we made a dent in getting this area like it used to be.”

Other projects took place at The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints Yaqui building. Tom Jewkes, leader of the group working on the grounds, noted, “We had two teams running ... One team painted stucco and reset the landscaping rocks while the other whacked weeds and cut desert broom at the ball fields and fire pit.”

After about three hours on the weed whacker, Bob Kicker, a participant, said, “I won’t be able to use my hands tomorrow.”

Inside the building women were sewing Christmas stockings for the needy. “We had a wonderful turnout for the sewing project today,” Allison Opie said. “We had around 20 ladies sewing, cutting, and pinning. Within less than three hours we sewed and completed over 150 stockings for foster kids in Sierra Vista. We exceeded our goal by 50 percent!”

Coordinator Jen Damato summed up the day: “This National Make a Difference Day was definitely a memorable event! It’s wonderful to see people from our community gather together in unity to support the needs of others. I appreciate the City of Sierra Vista and their representatives who worked diligently right beside all the volunteers to improve the area between the Rothery Center and the Park. All seven projects were completed and successful. It was impressive to see youth and children who joined in working hard to make a difference … Our hope is to bless the lives of others as we help to strengthen our community and those we serve. These events are a great way to make a big impact, however, may we all make a difference daily to better the world we live in.”

Submitted by Bonnie Holyoak