Helping Works by Anna Webb: 'Paint the Town' throws a party

June 3, 2014 

The deadline to participate as a volunteer or a homeowner in need for the 32nd annual Paint the Town event in Boise on Saturday has passed. Happily, there are still ways to help this cause, which provides free painting services for seniors and other homeowners in Boise.

Neighborhood Housing Services, host of Paint the Town (which typically attracts 2,000 volunteers each year), is throwing a block party to celebrate the big day and thank the volunteer teams. The festivities are from 3 to 7 p.m., Saturday, June 7, at Cassia Park, 4600 W. Camas St. in Boise.

The event is free and open to public, with live music, kid-friendly games, food, sponsor booths and raffle prizes. City Council members will attend. Contemporary folk-rock band Blaze and Kelly will perform at 5:30 p.m.

Paint The Town will also raffle off prizes (including airline tickets and an iPad) through its "Buy A Bucket" donation program. Donors give $10 - enough to buy a gallon of paint - and get two raffle tickets in return. Winners will be announced at the block party at 5 p.m. Donors don't have to be present to win.

Make donations and get more info online. Link through this column at idahostatesman.com.

You can also call Neighborhood Housing Services at 258-6215.

MERIDIAN GETS ITS HEART POUNDING

Boise, Kuna and New Plymouth all have Meet Me Mondays, free community walks that take place every Monday, rain or shine (more at meetmemonday.org). Now Meridian is embracing the healthy fun with "Move It Meridian," a new downtown Meridian social walking/running event hosted by the Pulse Running & Fitness Shop and the city of Meridian.

Move it Meridian takes place every Thursday evening, leaving from Meridian City Hall's Outdoor Plaza at 6:30 p.m.

Runners and walkers of all ages (as well as babies in strollers and dogs on leashes) are invited to participate. The hosts are also offering cool incentives for showing up. Questions? Call 884-1141.

HAVE A DRINK, HELP THE CHILDREN'S HOME

Every Wednesday during the month of June, employees and volunteers from the Idaho Children's Home Society will staff the beverage booth at Alive After Five.

All the tips they collect will go to the society's Community Sponsorship Program. The program provides emotional and behavioral health care for low-income and Medicaid families in Idaho. Its goal is to intervene early in the lives of kids at risk of dropping out of school, getting involved in the juvenile justice system or facing other hurdles.

Alive After Five is from 5 to 8 p.m. Wednesdays in June through August on the Grove Plaza.

MERRY MAIDS PROGRAM HELPS CANCER PATIENTS

Brad Dionne, owner of the Merry Maids, the Boise cleaning company has partnered with Cleaning for a Reason, a national charity that pairs cancer patients with cleaning companies to provide free cleaning services.

Merry Maids has cleaned the homes of 22 women with cancer several times. The project gives patients peace of mind, but also a healthy, clean environment, as many patients in treatment have compromised immune systems.

Potential clients who would like to learn more about the service should visit the website, cleaningforareason.org (link through this column at idahostatesman.com).

The organization screens clients, then refers them to local cleaning companies. Merry Maids provides up to four months of cleaning services (one free hour each month from a two-maid team) for clients.

NAMI NEEDS SPONSORS AND WALK TEAMS

The National Alliance on Mental Illness is preparing for the 2014 NAMI Walks later this fall. The organization is looking for sponsors and walk teams to start generating donations.

In a state such as Idaho, where suicide rates are among the highest in the nation, groups like NAMI, which offers an array of support and education programs for people affected by mental illness, are worth supporting.

Visit the website at namiwalks.org/boise (link through this column) to find out how to get involved.

'THE LONGEST DAY' IS A DIFFERENT KIND OF FUNDRAISER

On Saturday, June 21 (summer solstice and the day of the year with the longest sunlight), teams will gather to raise money for the Alzheimer's Association.

Here's what's interesting: Participating teams will commit to do an activity - any activity - for all the daylight hours on the 21st. The only rule is that someone on the team is active during each hour.

Teams can be any size. Organizers are encouraging participants to raise $100 in pledges for each hour and be part of a ceremony at the end of the day.

Whether it's knitting, playing ultimate frisbee, doing art work, or swimming, the fundraiser is a chance for you to do something you love with like-minded people.

For complete information, go to the Alzheimer's Association website (find a link through this column at idahostatesman.com) or call Christine Bubb, community outreach specialist for the Greater Idaho Chapter of the Alzheimer's Association, at 405-9068.

Anna Webb: 377-6431

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