United Way of Roanoke Valley Honors Key Partners

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Ellen McGimsey (right), Ellen's daughter meredith (left) and Audrey Grace Lemon, family friend (center).

United Way of Roanoke Valley volunteers spent Friday, June 26, 2020 brightening the view for seniors by painting cheery scenes on windows and chalking the sidewalks of Brandon Oaks Life Plan Community and Hermitage Roanoke.

The “Positive Palettes” event is part of this year’s Day of Action events, which have been spread out over several weeks to account for social distancing during COVID-19.  Volunteers will head to Richfield Living with chalk and paints  on July 10.

The theme of this year’s activities is B.E. United, and features volunteer projects designed to Benefit and Engage the Roanoke Valley’s senior citizens.

A painted on window beach scene at Brandon Oaks.

“My mother-in-law is a resident here, and it’s been so hard not to see her,” said volunteer Ellen McGimsey while visiting Brandon Oaks. “This is our way of giving back and thanking the staff for all they do.”

This year’s Day of Action events are actually spread out over several weeks, due to COVID-19 and social distancing. Volunteers have also been working on ‘virtual volunteering’ activities that fall under the theme of B.E. United, featuring projects designed to Benefit and Engage the Roanoke Valley’s senior citizens.  These include submissions to a video talent show, a greeting card collection and drop-off, and interviews between children and senior citizens.

 “Throughout the year, United Way Roanoke Valley is ensuring volunteers help fill critical needs in our community— with everything from meal and supply distribution, to helping essential workers secure childcare,” said Michelle Darby, Vice President of Resource Development at United Way. “There is a way that just about everyone can help. And it’s going to take all of us, living united.”

Traditionally held in June, Day of Action invites volunteers of all ages to rally together around important issues. Volunteers from more than 570 local United Ways in 17 countries work together to fight for the health, education and financial stability of every person in each community.