Chicago participates in National Day of Service

January 19, 2013 8:14:41 PM PST
Volunteers across Chicagoland served their community Saturday as part of National Day of Service in conjunction with President Barack Obama's second inauguration on Monday.

Sexton Elementary School on the South Side is getting beautified thanks to volunteers with Chicago Cares and Target the school was hand-picked for this event,

Governor Pat Quinn, who hoped on a plane shortly afterward to head to Washington, D.C. for the presidential inauguration, made a trip to the school, too.

"I think it's so special in Illinois that people from all different regions, areas, backgrounds, come together on a day of service," Quinn said.

It's a special moment for the staff, which vowed to turn this school around when the new administration started in July.

"It's about service and working together as a community so our students will get a chance to partner with different people in the community and learn about giving back," said assistant principal Tanneshia Wilson.

Students worked with volunteers, all while honoring Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

"He's a good man and wanted us to be free and in our race," said student Tamia Grant.

Volunteering continued across our area at the greater Chicago Food Depository, 110 people teamed up to package 2,800 meals for needy families.

"There is so many people that needs food and hungry it could be me,"volunteer Denise Goolfby said.

And the need is great.

The organization is down three million pounds of donated food, and with record levels of need, they could use all of the help they could get.

"That's particularly challenging for us right now as we continue to see more people in need," said Angel La Luz. In the last five years we've seen 85 percent more people coming to food pantries than five years ago."

La Luz reminds us on this National Day of Service that financial donations are just as important as donating your time.