Local business celebrates Earth Day with students
Published 9:53 pm Thursday, April 23, 2015
A group of U.S. Cellular employees met members of the Boys and Girls Club of Washington on Wednesday to celebrate Earth Day through beautifying the landscape around the club.
Student-members of the club met employees from the Washington and Williamston locations of U.S. Cellular after school to plant various perennial and annual flowers and shrubs in the front yard of the club, as well as water and pick weeds from existing plants. Among the flowers planted were Asiatic Lilies, French Marigolds, Celosia, Arizona Apricot Blanket Flower, Lavendar and others. The materials and new plants were purchased by U.S. Cellular, according to Latoya Moore, store manager for U.S. Cellular of Washington.
“I think the kids really had a wonderful time,” said Melissa McIntyre, public relations council for U.S. Cellular. “It’s just great for us to be able to get out and interact with them one on one. We interact with customers all the time, but we don’t get a lot of opportunities to interact with youth. It’s just something a little different in our day where we felt we could give back to the kids.”
Around one dozen student-members of the club participated in the event, including eighth-grade P.S. Jones student, Tyonna Pope, who gave comments about her involvement.
“We’re planting flowers, and it’s pretty cool,” Pope said. “Earth Day to me, basically, is helping out around the world, recycling, planting gardens and stuff like that.”
According to McIntyre, the outreach is part of U.S. Cellular’s Month of Giving Program in accordance with National Volunteer Month. Last month, the company kicked off the initiative, committing to a company-wide goal of 30,000 volunteer hours with Boys and Girls Clubs of America and National 4-H Council. The initiative is meant to promote STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) programs with youth, McIntyre said.
“We have done a lot of things with (Boys and Girls Clubs of America) historically, and we’re interested in helping them promote STEM programs with their kids,” McIntyre said. “It’s just a great way to get the kids outside, involving planting and the environment.”
McIntyre said U.S. Cellular will continue to explore ways the company can get involved with area Boys and Girls and 4-H clubs. In February, local branches of the company did a Black History Month art competition with club members in Greenville.
“We do a lot of Earth Day activities across eastern North Carolina,” McIntyre said. “We’re always looking for things to do with them that will go over great with the kids. We’re just going to continue to happily grow our partnership with them and see what else we can do with the kids.”