United Way of Athens-Limestone County held its Week of Caring that began Sept. 15. According to United Way Executive Director Kaye McFarlen, despite challenges, it was a success.

“We had a good week. We have roughly 200 to 350 volunteers helping within the community,” she said. “100% of the projects that were submitted were adopted, so I would say while the past the two years have been very challenging, the projects and the donations within the community have been amazing.”

Many of the donations and contributions are now stored in what looks like “Christmas morning,” in preparation for distribution day, according to McFarlen.

Originally, it started as a “Day of Caring” 15-years ago, but because of the growth within the community, it turned into a “Week of Caring.”

United Way strives to work with local businesses in Athens and around Limestone County for team-building experiences, according to their website. Their mission statement states on their website that they “secures resources to include financial support, volunteers, and in-kind donations of goods and services. We accomplish this by providing high-quality community services through collaborations and partnerships aligned with our vision.”

Roughly 34 projects, with a couple still outstanding, were adopted, including receiving student activity items for the Boys and Girls Club of Ardmore, office items and paint for a painting project for the Boys and Girls Club of Athens.

A big priority the past couple years has been dealing with COVID-19, patient items and help for healthcare workers at Hospice of Limestone County and emergency food items going to the Athens-Limestone County Family Resource Center.

“A big priority was to focus on not just healthcare workers who have been through so much with COVID-19, but housekeeping as well,” McFarlen acknowledged. “We wanted to recognize our community heroes and the video that we created shows that.”

United Way Athens Limestone posted a video on its Facebook page where McFarlen said she is very proud of what has been accomplished, and she encourages everyone in the community to watch it.

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