Friday, September 20, 2013

Xactware Cares About Community

United Way’s Day of Caring 2013 was phenomenal. 

Over 1400 volunteers from 27 companies and organizations completed numerous community service projects all over Utah County. The South Franklin Community Center was fortunate to have a group of extremely talented employees from Xactware volunteer to complete various projects for the center.

The 38 member Xactware team completed a monumental amount of work in 4 short hours. Thanks to the planning of project leader Larisa, the project was completed without a hitch. The projects that Xactware completed for the community center involved landscaping, space and storage, organization, and installation. The completion of the projects has given us more space, made the community center easier to use, and certainly made it look more beautiful!

Thank you to the Xactware photographer who generously let us use his pictures!

Some volunteers were kind enough to share thoughts from their Day of Caring experience:

Doug said, “What I liked most was the way this project brought people together. There are so many things dividing people and pulling them apart… I was proud to be a part of something positive which brought people together and helped us all stand on equal ground. This activity allowed us to focus on the one thing in our community which is most important and really matters…people.”

Lauren volunteered for her first Day of Caring because I wanted to become more involved in my community and do something for the benefit of someone else.” When asked about her favorite part of the day she said, “Besides playing in the dirt, my favorite part was seeing so many people come together to help those in our community. It’s amazing what you can get done with a few helping hands.”

Rosie shared, “I have the privilege of participating in Day of Caring each year... (Xactware has) been heavily involved for years. When I first started with Xactware I thought it was so neat that they allowed their employees to create a legacy of service and caring for the local community. I look forward to this event each year and hope to participate in it for many more years to come.”

The United Way and South Franklin Community Center staff also look forward to this event every year. When the day finally arrived, my heart started pounding with excitement as I approached the community center; there were Xactware volunteers EVERYWHERE! Wheelbarrows were rolling, power saws were churning, and feet were moving.

Here are some of the projects Xactware completed:

Grow Boxes

In the front of the building a huge mound of premium soil was transported into newly installed grow boxes. The volunteers worked so smoothly! While a small team installed the grow boxes, another group shoveled from the mound into wheelbarrows and deposited it into the already finished boxes.

Rosie from Xactware was not deterred when the rain started to pour, “ favorite moment was when we were about 80% done with the garden boxes and it started pouring rain.  Instead of running inside we all threw on our ponchos and kept at it.  Not only did we work as a team out in the rain, I think we worked even more quickly and efficiently than before the rain had started.  We had a great time, some good laughs, and were able to finish up all of the garden boxes outside.  It brought a great sense of accomplishment and pride that we were able to help the local community.” 

Left: the Ominous clouds don't deter the smiles of these hardworking ladies.
 Center: Two volunteers unload the grow boxes for installation.
Right: Adding the finishing touches to the grow boxes as volunteers admire their job well done.

Fence and Bike Rack Installation

A dedicated group installed poles for the chain link fence. Knee deep in dirt and mud, the team navigated an array of pipes and cords to complete their project.

Another group worked to put together and install two bike racks. They picked the perfect location for the bike racks and one of the volunteers, Brett, even called in a favor from a friend to bring the right power drill to finish the installation.

Left: Two volunteers carry one of the bike racks to be installed in their final resting place.
Right: Preparation for cement-pouring is complete, next come the poles for the fence!

Shelving Installed in Closets

Closets were measured and shelves were cut with a power saw for installation into our two closets. Others stood inside empty closets mounting supports for the shelves. When the shelves were installed the closets took on a whole new aura. The beautiful white shelves deserve their own theme music to accompany the superhero-like improvement in organization and space usage.

Left: Operation shelving commences with installing supports for the shelves.
Right: The shelves are cut to custom fit our closets!

Bookshelves Mounted and Books Transported and Organized
Thanks to yet another awesome group, the library was finally finished! The team used their amazing mathematical abilities to cut perfectly aligned square openings in the bookshelves to leave the outlets open for use. Furthermore, the bookshelves were mounted to the walls to prevent any bookshelves tipping over.
What’s more, ALL of the books in the library were sorted through and organized! What we at South Franklin Community Center could not envision doing ourselves for the sheer amount of work it would require, Xactware accomplished in four hours! The bookshelves are sure to contain only the best hand-picked books for our library users.
But wait, there’s more! Another group from Xactware used their personal truck and bicep power to help us transport the books from the old community center library to the new center. These books were also organized. Can you believe it?!

Left: Books, books, and more books. Two lovely volunteers helped sort all of the books in the library.
Right: A volunteer works on freeing up those outlets by measuring and cutting holes in the bookshelves.

Thank you again.

The day was an incredible and astounding day. Xactware’s generosity and the professional quality of their work makes them our South Franklin Superheroes. This is just one example of what was accomplished on Day of Caring. Can you imagine how much work was completed across Utah County?

We thank Xactware again and again for their contribution and for making the South Franklin Community Center a better place for the kids, teenagers, and adults that use our center.

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