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DO Something: Southeast San Diego
By Shelley Gilbert

An estimated 900 volunteers from the Rock Church worked all day on Saturday, October 3, 2009, on three sites as part of the church's "DO Something Southeast San Diego" campaign. The Rock has faithfully completed our 100,000 DO Something hours committed to the Mayor of San Diego. The clean up event prompted community leaders and park officials to react with praise and gratitude.

Volunteers working to clean up trash.

Volunteers cleaned, painted, gardened and repaired the facilities and grounds around Chollas Lake and the Jacobs Center and Colina del Sol recreation centers. (See sidebar below, and accompanying story, "An Eye-Opening Experience.")

“The work you guys did here today would have taken us months to accomplish," said a Chollas Lake Ranger. "Our staffing levels are low; we are just trying to sustain these areas.”

“The work you guys did here today would have taken us six to eight months to accomplish."

At Chollas Lake, a community park, about 400 volunteers including junior high students cleared brush, picked up trash and painted the picnic tables and benches. The students sang while they worked. An estimated 5,000 pounds of trash was hauled away.

“We were created to glorify God, and coming out en mass to DO Something makes a big difference,” said Debbie Binggeli, who worked alongside her son Cody and husband Phil. Vondell and Weldon, a husband and wife team, said, “By coming together we can accomplish a lot. The fellowship and getting to meet other believers is an added benefit.”

Evian Rivera, a first-time volunteer said, “Cleaning up debris feels good.”

Another first-time volunteer, Lauren Barnes shared, “Seeing Chollas Lake (cleaned up) from beginning to end made such an impact that I want to get more involved,” she said.

About 300 volunteers showed up at the Jacobs Center, and nearly 200 helped at Colina del Sol. Entire families pitched in to help. Anita Goggins was there with her family. “It takes a little bit of effort to make a world of difference,” she said.

Many people came to help DO Something!

Rachel and Nick Aldous reflected after serving, “Do as unto the Lord. You don’t worry who sees you; you do it right. Give to something bigger than yourself."

First-time volunteers, Lissetta and Alek said, “It feels good helping out.”

Brook and her friend, Chloe said, “We made a difference in our community, showing the love of Christ in a real way.”

The Southeast San Diego Community Project was the second DO Something Mayor's event. The third and final one of the year will be the Toys for Joy event on December 12, 9 AM at the Memorial Park and Recreation Center. We are anticipating over 15,000 people. To make this happen, we we will need 1,500 volunteers, 10,000 toys, and 125,000 articles of clothing. Please pray about how you can be a part of this annual Christmas tradition and share the love of Christ with others.


Love in Action

What I noticed about DO Something Southeast San Diego was that everyone was ready to do something!

In the beginning when we were still finding out where we could help, people seemed really anxious to get going and were consistently asking, "How can I help?" People were in a service mindset.

We painted all the doors of the Colina del Sol rec center gym, the inside halls and staircase, the walls behind the stage, swept the entire gym, cleaned all the mats, cleaned the bathrooms, stripped old paint and repainted walls, and that was just what I noticed!

There was no grumbling, criticizing or complaining just adoration, humming, whistling, singing and praising could be heard far and wide. Everyone had a smile on their face and received every person with kindness and love.

Really, it was such a blessing to see the goodness of these peoples hearts. That was what was so rare--seeing the pure hearts out in the open availing themselves by faith working through love. It was exactly what Paul spoke of when he wrote, For in Jesus Christ neither circumcision availeth any thing, nor uncircumcision; but faith which worketh by love. Galatians 5:6

-- Jeannette Vancio