An annual event that makes a big difference in local schools returns this weekend, and organizers expect Hands on Nashville to be larger than ever.
This will be the 21st year volunteers have spread across the city to help spruce up schools in Davidson County.
"There will be 350 yards of mulch between all 57 schools; 1,100 gallons of paint; and then countless numbers of paint brushes, rubber gloves, garbage bags and rakes. You name it, we've got it," said Becca Stinson, with Hands on Nashville.
Metro Nashville Public Schools will provide the supplies and volunteers will provide a big economic impact with manpower hours estimated at $174,000. Of course, there is a reward for those who help.
"Yes, work for the soul. Exactly," Stinson said.
Hands on Nashville organizers need 2,000 people to make the project a success, and they are short right now.
"We are at 1,860 right now, which is bigger than ever, but we still need about 150 volunteers to sign up," Stinson said.
Amy Baker is bringing a team of 54 volunteers from Belmont University to help out at DuPont Hadley Middle School. She signed up for a second year after last year's experience working alongside her students.
"We had music going. We were laughing and cutting up, cracking jokes on each other, just really having a great time," Baker said. "There was no pressure, just getting to know them on a different level."
Volunteers don't have to be experts to complete the "done-in-a-day projects." The day starts at 8 a.m. with four hours of work and wraps up with lunch and a concert. Plus, students will receive a fresh start when they return to school next week.
"They were so excited knowing when they came back on Monday they were going to have painted walls, a new smell and somewhat of a new atmosphere to learn in," Baker said.
Hands on Nashville will be accepting donations this weekend, but you don't have to donate to volunteer.
They do ask you to pre-register to participate, though. To get started, visit: http://www.hon.org/honday.
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