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United Way Day of Action is an annual event when United Ways throughout the world harness the power of volunteers to positively change communities. This summer, on June 21st, United Way of 1000 Lakes will mobilize hundreds of volunteers to participate in Day of Action projects focused on promoting healthy and active lifestyles for residents of greater Itasca County.

 “The Day of Action is a way for all sectors of our community to unite and work towards accomplishing the common vision of helping others. What you see today is a living testimony of our organization’s mission: to improve lives mobilizing the caring power of our communities,” said Kimberly Brink Smith, United Way executive director.

United Way of 1000 Lakes is coordinating several hands on projects from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. (check-in begins at 8:30 a.m.), as well as a community-wide Personal Care Drive June 1st- 21st, to help vulnerable children and adults at risk of meeting their basic needs, including personal care products. The care items will be redistributed to United Way’s nonprofit partners serving disconnected youth, veterans and the homeless throughout the Itasca area.

Day of Action projects will impact six Itasca communities: Bigfork, Cohasset, Coleraine, Deer River, Grand Rapids and Marble. Projects include creating Park PlayStations, beautifying the Public Art Walk, stenciling parking stalls, and organizing a Health & Hygiene Drive. All projects will promote healthy and active lifestyles by utilizing local spaces and creating more exercise resources for kids and families in Itasca neighborhoods.

Along with this year’s Day of Action partners (Get Fit Itasca, Grand Itasca, Grand Rapids Recreation Department, Deer River Boys and Girls Club, Essentia Health, and MacRostie Art Center), this year’s projects are made possible in part through financial support from Kimberly Clark’s Depend brand.

Depend and United Way are coming together to promote healthy, active, and independent living throughout an individuals’ life, with a focus on volunteering.

Healthy communities are strong communities. By harnessing the power and support of local businesses and volunteers on Day of Action, United Way of 1000 Lakes seeks to promote positive change that will raise awareness, increase activity levels in local communities, and leave Itasca County a healthier, safer place to live. 

There is no fee to participate and all ages and abilities are eligible to participate. Sign-up as an individual, a family or grab your friends and co-workers and register as a group. 

“We hope that volunteers walk away from a Day of Action with a better understanding of United Way’s role in the community,” said Luke Francisco, United Way Board Vice President. “We also hope that they become inspired to continue enriching our community through volunteerism. One thing I know for sure is that great communities are only created when the people who live there are willing to give back.”

For more information about volunteering or sponsoring the Day of Action, contact Kimberly Brink Smith, at 218-999-7570 or For a complete list of activities and updates, visit 

Join hundreds of other active volunteers for a variety of hand-on projects. Projects range from painting to gardening and landscaping to window washing. Volunteers will be matched with the project that most closely aligns with their group size, skill level and interest. You will then be connected with the lead from the volunteer team to ensure that all is ready for a successful volunteer project. Volunteers will receive a Day of Action t-shirt and lunch (t-shirts guaranteed to first 100 registered volunteers). Register for a full day (8:30-3:30 p.m.) or half day (8:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m.; 11:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m.). Alternate Day of Action (in case of rain): Wednesday, June 22nd. Register now. 

Hold a Collection Drive:
Coordinate a collection drive at your church, organization, civic group or business. All you have to do is collect the items. Sponsor a care package with a monetary gift or donate much needed items including: toothbrushes, FULL SIZE toothpaste, hair care products and deodorant, laundry detergent, first aid supplies, diapers, feminine hygiene products, paper products, and new wash cloths and hand and bath towels. Download toolkit.

Get the Word Out: 
Spread the word about Day of Action by posting flyers (available at Wear your Live United shirt! Shirts can be purchased for $10 (includes a $5 donation to United Way) by calling 218-999-7570. Post a selfie of you and your friends and share on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram accounts. Use Day of Action hashtags: #DayofAction, #Volunteer and #LiveUnited. 


About United Way of 1000 Lakes
United Way of 1000 Lakes is the leader in mobilizing resources of individuals, companies, government and local organizations, igniting community collaboration for change in support of the building blocks for a good quality life – success in school; financial stability; access to care; and making healthy lifestyle choices. United way invites everyone to join the movement. Visit


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