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Volunteers to the Rescue!

The San Diego City Council meeting was packed this week as community members anxiously awaited the upcoming budget discussion. The proposed cuts to public services topped the agenda. This includes cuts to local libraries, schools, recreation centers and various other programs. The funding just isn’t available. With the cities multi-million dollar deficit, cuts are inevitable and the tone of this meeting reflected that somber realization. But then the meeting took a positive shift with the agenda item of “utilizing volunteerism.” Different areas of volunteerism were discussed and councilmembers highlighted how nonprofit organizations stand out as leading examples in the community. Councilmember Todd Gloria specifically referred to ILACSD as one of the organizations making a major impact with thousands of volunteers.
“Two weeks ago I was cleaning up a canyon in City Heights…we had a couple hundred volunteers at this canyon and that was replicated at 75 different sites throughout the County organized by I Love A Clean San Diego,” said Councilmember Gloria. “That’s thousands of volunteers helping to clean the city, it’s really incredible.”

Councilmember Marti Emerald attended the Creek to Bay cleanup and talked about how ILACSD is a leading example in mobilizing volunteers.

Councilmember Marti Emerald Kicks's off Creek to Bay cleanup

There were more than 5,000 volunteers out for that cleanup. They were not complaining about work, money…or even getting up early on a Saturday morning. You could see the pride in each smiling face and the sense of accomplishment of working toward a common goal.

It feels good to know that even during times of economic uncertainty, we as a community are still coming together to help the environment. To me, it represents a new number to measure the wealth of a city. How about 30,000? The number of our dedicated volunteers who come out each year to show their love for San Diego…that makes our future very rich!
-Kara Stevens