More than 200 Daly City residents stepped up to take part in community service projects throughout the community as part of Make A Difference Day, a national day of volunteerism, on Oct. 25.
Daly City community members and neighborhood groups participated in the nationwide event for the 16th year, and Assistant City Manager Julie Underwood said she was impressed with the turnout.
“It feels like we had a little more than expected. We had all kinds of different events going on around the city,” Underwood said. “I have to say I don't know if there are any other cities on the Peninsula that are doing it. I think we're kind of unique in that we've been doing it for almost 20 years."
Volunteers got their hands dirty at various neighborhood, school and coastal cleanups throughout Daly City. Participants from the local Boys & Girls Club helped clean the neighborhood near its location in the Bayshore neighborhood.
Others cleaned and landscaped some of the area known as Top of the Hill on Mission Street. Some cleaned the coastal lands at Mussel Rock, while some helped restore plants on hills at Hillside Park.
Many volunteers participated as part of a group from a business, school or non-profit organization. Volunteers from resource recovery agency Recology painted the North Peninsula food pantry building, while cadets from the police academy assisted with school and neighborhood cleanups.
But the event also attracted individual residents who simply wanted to help out the community.
“There was a great couple; they're local business owners and residents. They actually grew up in Daly City, and they've returned, and they really want to make a difference, and they just volunteered,” Underwood said.
After putting in work in the morning, volunteers were all served a free lunch as a reward for their efforts. The lunch also provided an opportunity for residents to relax and socialize, perhaps with residents they hadn't gotten to know previously.
“On the Bayshore side of town, we did a cookout, and the police cadets were there helping us with that
as well, so it's a good way for us to really be a community,” Underwood said.
The event also featured several recycling services, which have been consistently popular over the years. Residents were able to bring in items to recycle such as electronic waste and shredded documents.
Make A Difference Day, a national day devoted to community service, is sponsored and promoted by Points of Light, an international non-profit service organization, and USA Weekend, the weekend edition of USA Today. The groups co-sponsor the event, which has been held annually for 20 years. It takes place each year on the fourth Saturday of October.