Armed with hedge trimmers, rakes, chain saws, mowers and other lawn equipment, more than 60 volunteers showed up Saturday, Aug. 9 at John de la Howe School to assist with a campus clean-up.
In their four hours of labor, the volunteers amassed at least two dozen truck and trailer loads of clippings, limbs and other debris for deposit in the school’s landfill.
“We were humbled at the overwhelming response of the surrounding community,” said Dr. Danny Webb, President of John de la Howe. “It’s obvious that many, many people not only support this school, but also have deep feelings about its mission in providing a safe place for the children of our state to heal, grow and make lasting changes.”
The result of their hard work was most impressive, according to Dr. Webb.
“We cannot adequately thank those who literally rolled up their sleeves to help with the clean-up day,” he said. “They worked as a team to bring a huge improvement to the appearance of our campus, and for this we say thank you from the bottom of our hearts.”
Volunteers included school staff, teachers and alumni, residents of nearby Savannah Lakes Village, a member of the SC House of Representatives, a group representing the Greenwood Motorcycle Club, residents of McCormick, Habitat for Humanity, church groups, members of a fraternity and others. A work detail from the South Carolina Department of Corrections also showed up to assist as they trimmed shrubbery in front of the school’s administrative building.
“We do what we can to help with charities and special events,” said James Lollis of Greenwood, who joined with nine other members of the Greenwood Motorcycle Club in volunteering their time and labor. “A few weeks back we had come to John de la Howe for a Thursday night study at the school’s chapel. A young lady had quite a message and we said then we wanted to come back and help in the future.”
Shortly after noon, clean-up volunteers were thanked with a lunch in the John de la Howe School cafeteria.
While other beautification work remains to be done at the 217-year-old school, the efforts extended at Saturday’s clean-up day made for a great start, according to Dr. Webb, who again expressed appreciation to all who participated.