EDITORIAL: Opportunities

There are several opportunities right now to celebrate National Volunteer Month and to help the community.

This weekend is Green Up Day in Weston. This annual “spruce up the town” day is in fact celebrated throughout the state thanks to one of Weston’s own. The late Millie Best founded Green Up Day in Weston 40 years ago, in 1972. Twenty-three years later, because of her leadership and persistence, then-Gov. John Rowland signed a bill declaring the last Saturday in April as Green Up Day for all of Connecticut.

Ms. Best’s legacy lives on today, not only in the annual environmental award given each year in her memory, but also in the continuation of Green Up Day and Weston’s commitment to its principle — a clean world is everyone’s responsibility.

The Weston Kiwanis Club is organizing a posse of green-uppers this Saturday, stepping off from the Norfield Church parking lot at about 9 a.m. Volunteers will be assigned town properties or roadways on which to concentrate their clean-up efforts, and arrangements will be made to get the trash to the transfer station.

Even if you can’t make it to Norfield Saturday morning, do your part by greening up your own neighborhood on Saturday. A little time and effort makes a big difference.

There are other ways to fly your volunteer flag this month, too.

The town’s Emergency Response Committee, a subset of the Weston Community Service Coalition, is organizing neighborhood captains, point people on every street in town in emergency situations. More than 125 people have stepped up to the task, but there are still some areas that need coverage. Contact Ken Edgar, coalition chairman, at [email protected] to help.

The town is also looking to create two very important volunteer committees.

One, the Legal Review Committee, is for a finite time period. This committee will look at the work town’s legal counsel has performed over the last few years, determine its effectiveness, and report back to the Board of Selectmen. It’s an important job, best done by “fresh eyes” — preferably those with some legal experience, although the main requirement is unbiased common sense.

The other committee that needs volunteers is one that will oversee — and ultimately steer the course for — the town-owned Lachat property. This is a jewel in the heart of Weston and its future needs stewardship by people willing to explore many options, make lots of decisions and recommendations, and treat the land as the true gift to Weston that it really is. This is a chance to shape the future of Weston in a positive, meaningful, long-lasting way. The Board of Selectmen is accepting letters of interest emailed to [email protected] or dropped off at town hall.

Volunteering must come from the heart in order to be effective. Before month’s end, look into yours and see what you might be willing and able to do for your community. The opportunities are knocking.

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