Large signs with the words “Love Turlock” are once again popping up around town as the annual day of community service will be returning for its 12th year on April 29. The goal of Love Turlock is to inspire the community to love each other through connecting and participating in service projects around town.
“I really believe that Love Turlock can be a host for other things in our city,” said Melanie Youkhana of the Love Turlock leadership team. “I think it’s a reminder of how much of an impact we can have in just one given day, and that’s a reflection of what people can do all year long in other capacities. This event is a catalyst for our city.”
This year, Love Turlock will once again kick off at Donnelly Park at 8 a.m. After opening remarks from community organizers and city officials, volunteers will disperse across town to participate in any projects they signed up for. Once the projects wrap up at around noon, participants will reconvene at Donnelly Park for an appreciation lunch courtesy of the Kiwanis Club of Greater Turlock.
In 2022, nearly 500 community members volunteered for 27 different community service projects. As the 2023 campaign gets underway, there are already 12 projects ready for folks to sign up for. On top of that, Love Turlock is actively taking project suggestions, which they hope to add to their current list. Additionally, the Love Turlock team has posed a challenge to City of Turlock council members to step up and participate in projects in their respective districts. Project suggestions will be taken up to the end of March.
There will be projects available for all skill sets, ages and abilities. While some volunteers will be getting their hands dirty with landscaping, painting and cleaning, others will be making plush teddy bears for children in crisis and creating thank you letters to first responders amongst other activities.
There are also a pair of projects before and after Love Turlock. On March 24, the team will be needing help setting up additional signs promoting the event. The day after the event, on April 30, the team will need similar help taking the signs down.
“I personally love this event because I feel like I’m doing something bigger than myself and giving back to the community,” Youkhana said. “I raise children in this community and I want to also teach them how important it is to foster goodness where you live and leave that positive impact, and I’d encourage others to do the same.”
A full list of projects to sign up for and forms to submit project suggestions can be found at www.LoveTurlock.com.