Last updated: July 17. 2013 1:47PM - 7137 Views

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Julia Roberts Goad


Staff Writer


WILLIAMSON - The Williamson Redevelopment Authority (WRA) is inviting area residents to team up with volunteers who have come to the area with churches and civic organizations on “voluntourism” trips to work on projects that will have a long lasting impact community development.


Voluntourism is a concept that is growing in popularity throughout the world as a new way to


travel. Rather than sightseeing, visitors contribute time to community development efforts.


Looking to bring together volunteers with community members, WRA commissioners and local leaders have shared the schedule and invite area residents to come out and help on several projects while the volunteers are in town.


More than seventy Amizade volunteers are arriving from Boston on Friday, June 28. They will be staying at the Belfry First Baptist Church and East Williamson Baptist Church and landscaping with the Williamson Housing Authority at Liberty Heights and Victoria Courts. They will also be working on the community garden at Ramella Community Park in East Williamson.


Scott “Jukey” Yates, who grew up in Williamson and moved away for about eight years.


“Now I am back to volunteer my time at home,” he said. Scott will be driving construction material to the sites with the family truck, building raised garden beds and guiding youth volunteers.


The Mingo County Diabetes Coalition Health and Wellness Promoter, Maria Arnot is encouraging area churches to get involved by starting community gardens that can be cared for by the congregation.


“Mingo County does not have a lot of fresh food available in stores, but we can grow it ourselves,” Arnot said. “If we increase the amount of locally grown food that is available, it reminds everyone about ways to eat healthier and to save money at the same time.”


WRA invites families to take part in these landscaping and gardening projects that will have a lasting impact on the community.


Call 304-235-3400 for more information, or check out the Williamson Farmers Market Facebook page this week.


The groups will be at the following locations:


Saturday, June 29, 8 a.m. – 4 p.m. at the Williamson Farmer’s Market, 1 p.m. – 4 p.m: at Liberty Heights and Ramella Park Community Gardens in East End


Sunday, June 30, 1 p.m. – 4 p.m. at Liberty Heights and Victoria Courts, 1 p.m. – 4 p.m. at Ramella Park Community Gardens in East End


Monday, July 1, 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. landscape projects at Liberty Heights and Victoria Courts, 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. at Ramella Park Community Gardens in East End


Tuesday, July 2, 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. at the Mingo County Orchard in Ragland on Cow Creek Mountain


Wednesday, July 3, 9 a.m. – 1 p.m. at Liberty Heights and Victoria Courts, 9 a.m. – 1 p.m. Ramella Park Community Gardens in East End, 1 p.m. at Williamson Swimming Pool – take a break and enjoy the summer!


Thursday, July 4, 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. landscape projects at Liberty Heights and Victoria Courts, 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. at Ramella Park Community Gardens in East End.

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