REACH volunteers help out a less able Lents volunteer

Although this Lents resident helps the less fortunate every day, learn why he’s says he’s glad to accept a helping hand from REACH Volunteers …

Project REACH team leader Kathye Partridge helps to haul yard debris for Lents homeowner Ron Knox – himself, a volunteer.

Story and photos by David F. Ashton
Every day, Lents resident Ron Knox volunteers at the St. Vincent DePaul food pantry. “I love to volunteer, and help my community,” says Knox.

But, today, Knox is getting some help of his own from volunteers at REACH Community Development on their summer clean-up day.

“My hedge had grown so tall, I was afraid I’d have to put lights on it so airplanes don’t hit it,” Knox jokes. “When my yard gets out of hand, it means so much to me that REACH helps come and get back in control. It shows how much people help each other.”

Volunteers from Starbucks #15, at SE Milwaukie Avenue & Bybee Boulevard, including barista Juanita Kolbe and her daughter Zoe, lend a helping hand by trimming bushes during the August 4 area-wide event.

Will work for food
“We all volunteer because we feel it is important to help members of community,” says team leader for Project REACH, Kathye Partridge.

“All the people working here on Mr. Knox’ yard are volunteers,” Partridge tells us. “We feed them and give them beverages. We’re better able than some of the folks we’re helping clean up their houses and yards.”

Volunteer Mike Thomas works up a sweat hauling branches – a lot of branches!

Not only does the work help the homeowner, Partridge says their efforts also improve the look of the street, neighborhood, and community.

“I’m so thankful for Project REACH,” praises Knox. “Their help lets me help in my home. It allows me to be independent.”

© 2007 David F. Ashton ~ East Portland News Service

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