|Students from last year's event|
Genevieve Delano, director of PowerServe and a junior at Windham High School, said that the event was initially planned as a one-time thing, but there were many requests that it happen again after last year’s event. “One hundred percent of the people we got survey results from, wanted to do it again,” she said.
That was exciting for the committee of organizers, who started planning for this year’s event at the beginning of the school year. PowerServe has a main sponsor, Gorham Savings Bank, and the committee is currently reaching out to other potential sponsors. “We’re really excited to do it again,” Delano said.
Last year, PowerServe was dedicated to Shane Donnelly, a classmate who passed away. This year, Delano said, the event is dedicated to the overall community and making that community better - but also acknowledge both Shane and another classmate, Kelly, who passed away when she was in fifth grade and would have been graduating with the senior class this year. “The senior class is doing a lot, with graduation especially, as a tribute to Shane and Kelly,” Delano said. The PowerServe committee wanted to do something similar in support of their families, moving negative energy and sadness into positive energy that can be used towards making the community better, she said.
Participation last year was over and above what the committee expected, with close to 300 participants and 18 different projects completed. “We had a great turnout and everybody loved it,” Delano said.
Last year, most projects took place on the school campus and included: Planting, gardening, building bridges on the cross country trail, and painting dugouts. This year, similar projects are planned, but the group also hopes to expand projects, to have a wider impact in the communities of Windham, Raymond and Gorham, Delano said. One new project for this year is to partner with the police department in Windham to fix up the outside of the station, and do some planting in the K9 memorial garden, Delano said.
Anyone with a project idea can contact the committee at: firstname.lastname@example.org. Projects might include yardwork for veterans or people who may need assistance, park clean up, and “Anything that people can tap into that we might have missed,” Delano said.
The committee encourages people to register in advance if they plan to attend, so that teams can be organized, and people can be placed on a project that coincides with their skills and interests.
Registration is free, and can be done online at: www.sebago.younglife.org. The first 250 registrants will receive a free t-shirt. The event begins at 8:30 a.m. and a complimentary lunch will be served at noon.
Delano emphasized that PowerServe is a community service event, not a fundraiser. Sponsors support the event, but there is not an effort to raise funds, beyond what is needed to successfully complete the planned projects, provide t-shirts, and provide lunch. The flyer promoting the event succinctly described the overall goal with this statement: “Serving our community and each other is a powerful way to connect with others and find significance and joy in our own lives. By coming together as a community from all walks of life with many different skills and voices, we can make a difference.
This May, we invite you to PowerServe as we remember those no longer with us.”