Mormon Helping Hands Community Service Projects

Volunteers paint the Fred Finch Youth Center campus on Coolidge Avenue in Oakland.

The Mormon Helping Hands program mobilized more 5,000 volunteers to conduct community service project on April 20 and 27 throughout the Bay Area. The largest project this year took place in Oakland where Mormon Helping Hands 2013, in partnership with Rebuilding Together Oakland and The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, led an interfaith effort bringing together about 900 volunteers to prep, paint, and weed the Fred Finch Youth Center campus on Coolidge Avenue in Oakland. Fred Finch provides professional, culturally competent, individualized mental health and social services including housing and schooling for 30 at-risk foster children. Rebuilding Together Oakland utilizes volunteers to repair the homes of low-income homeowners in Oakland so they may live in safety, comfort and independence. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints’ Oakland and Oakland East Stakes represent over 3,800 households in Oakland and the East Bay and provided volunteers and a donation of $10,000 toward the project. The Mormon Helping Hands program, established in 1998, has provided thousands of volunteer hours in hundreds of project including the 2012 Sandy cleanup in the multiple states affected by that storm. This year, the Mormon Helping Hands is sponsoring hundreds of interfaith community service projects throughout California as mapped on http://mhhcalifornia.org/locations. For more detailed information on the scope of the California Mormon Helping Hands projects, go to  http://mhhcalifornia.org The Antioch Stake brought about 500 volunteers to clean up three city parks, joined with another church in planting trees in Brentwood, did rehab at the county fairgrounds and cleaned up Marsh Creek. The Concord Stake, with about 350 volunteers, cleaned up a city park in San Pablo.   In Martinez, they painted and cleaned the historic railroad station, cleaned up the downtown area and weeded and cleaned headstones at the historic cemetery. Danville Stake, with 400 volunteers, painted, cleaned up and landscaped at California High School in San Ramon. The Hayward Stake, with 300 volunteers participating, conducted nine projects including planting trees in Union City and making quilts for the homeless. The Mormon’s San Francisco Stake brought about 200 volunteers to work at the Golden Gate National Cemetery, cleaning and beautifying headstones and landscaping.  The San Francisco East Stake (Tongan), with about 300 volunteers participating, performed cleanup and landscaping work at Coyote Point Park near San Mateo. The San Francisco West Stake was involved in seven projects, including the Food Bank. The San Leandro Stake, with about 300 volunteers, did park cleanup in San Leandro and painted the historic train station in Alameda. Walnut Creek Stake brought 100 volunteers for cleanup in Clayton and 200 volunteers who performed landscaping and built trails and a volleyball court at Heather Farms in Walnut Creek. Another 40 volunteers constructed 4,000 feet of new fencing at Sugar Loaf Park in Walnut Creek. There were also projects in San Jose and Marin County, which brought the total number of Bay Area participants to over 5,000.
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