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In West Linn, neighbors truly help neighbors


On Saturday, I once again had the privilege of witnessing the great heart of West Linn residents.

April 26 was the city’s annual Neighbors Helping Neighbors event, where residents volunteer to help fellow residents who are in need and cannot physically or financially care for their own yards.

The work is not easy and the weather is unpredictable, but the rewards are many.

Volunteers ranged in age from young children, who pulled up weeds, wielded giant pruners and navigated wheelbarrows, to more “mature” residents, who tackled massive amounts of ivy, cut up dead or dying trees and bushes and worked to fill the refuse debris bins.

An estimated 70 volunteers worked at 13 houses, with a few more in need that will be followed up on.

These homeowners, who are mostly elderly, are so appreciative of the help and greet the volunteers with smiling faces and many thanks. The results are often dramatic after a team of volunteers works just three hours in a yard.

This community event could not run without many hands and many hearts. Though Neighbors Helping Neighbors was formerly run under the city, it is now purely volunteer driven by the Neighbors Helping Neighbors Steering Committee.

Without their countless hours of planning, this event would not happen.

Other groups who contribute numerous volunteers to the event that deserve our thanks include the West Linn Rotary Club, the West Linn Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and Community of Faith.

And, West Linn Refuge & Recycling and Recology provided key services of removal and recycling of debris from the homes. So, a big shout out goes to the both of them. Thank you!

If you haven’t volunteered for Neighbors Helping Neighbors before, please consider volunteering next year. It is a great event for families, neighbors and the community to boost each other up and help each other out. Just three hours of your time can make a big difference in the life of someone in West Linn.

For more information about the event, visit westlinnoregon.gov/neighborhoods/neighbors-helping-neighbors-2014.

Mike Jones is a West Linn resident and serves as a city councilor

and a Rotarian.