Hundreds of volunteers swarm Dubuque with community service - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Hundreds of volunteers swarm Dubuque with community service

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DUBUQUE (KWWL) -

Hundreds of volunteers took to the streets Friday as part of the Young Professionals Dubuque Community Days of Caring. This two-day service event is in its eighth year and now bigger and better than ever.

Organizations ranging from group homes and cemeteries to churches and community groups got a little facelift Friday. Plus, hundreds of area employees got some time in the beautiful weather.

Vicki Dolan works at John Deere Dubuque Works. She and five other Deere employees volunteered as a group for the event. It's not how they'd typically spend their Friday afternoon.

"A lot of looking at my computer, sending e-mails, that kind of thing," Dolan said. "I don't get to get up and come outside and enjoy this great weather."

As part of the YP Dubuque Community Days of Caring, this group removed shrubs and rocks for a future community green space in front of Bridge Christian Community in downtown Dubuque. The task required teamwork, just like in the workplace -- one of the selling points event organizers pitched to area employers.

"It's a great team-building activity," event chair Lisa Bowers said. "It's also great to give back to the community, and then [companies] don't have to give in sponsorship dollars, because we have a lot of businesses that are generous in that regards, but if they want to donate their employees, if you will, and their time, then that's obviously very, very helpful."

Organizers of this annual event sent out a wish list to area non-profit organizations several months ago, asking what projects they needed help tackling.

At Hills and Dales, a group of volunteers from American Trust and Savings Bank re-painted benches and added new mulch.

"I think it's just a way for a local business to have a face in the community and do something that benefits the greater whole," Kerwin Kilian, volunteer with the Deere group, said.

YP Dubuque Community Days of Caring spans Friday and Saturday. In total, more than 800 volunteers will be helping approximately 40 non-profit organizations and charities throughout the Dubuque area.

The event is run with the leadership of the Community Foundation of Greater Dubuque and the Dubuque Area Chamber of Commerce.

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