From Illinois Business Journal news services
ALTON – Friends of the YWCA are uniting this Saturday, Aug. 8, from 8 a.m. to noon to kick off efforts to bring new life to the historic facility. The first objectives include the beautification of the grounds and renovation of the Children’s Learning Center.
Volunteers from CNB Bank, Pride Fairmount Garden Group, the Sierra Club and the National Honor Societies from Marquette High and Alton High will be helping with landscaping around the facility at 304 E. Third St., weeding, mowing, cleaning up and replanting garden beds, and cleaning-up the children’s playground. Other community members are invited to help.
Materials for the beautification project are provided with the support of the Alton Community Service League. The ACSL grant and direct assistance of the Sierra Club has made the continued expansion of the YWCA garden areas possible. The Sierra Club has designed and helped children implement butterfly and vegetable gardens this season, are currently helping stabilize some of the YWCA hillsides through plantings and help design the future Jane and Bob Bruker Memorial Garden.
As part of this effort, local artists are leading a mural project planned for the Children’s Learning Center entry. Samantha Purcell-Blythe, Laura Blair, Chris Ilewski-Huelsmann, and Jeanie Cousley are incorporating children’s silhouettes from the program into an original design for the retaining wall along Alton Street.
The organizer of Saturday’s event and lead designer for the Children’s Learning Center, YWCA board member Britta Haggard, encourages the community to join in the efforts.
“The unique heritage of the organization and our dynamic youth programming makes the YWCA a special place — we want the rest of the community to be able to see the YWCA for the treasure it is and to be able to take advantage of our service in an inspiring environment,” Haggard said.
For more information about how to help, contact the YWCA at (618) 465-7774 between 11 a.m. and 6 p.m.