KCP hosts Safe, Clean & Green volunteer open house Sunday, Oct. 22

Kutztown Community Partnership’s Safe Clean and Green program hosts Clean Ups every Sunday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Kutztown Community Partnership’s Safe Clean and Green program hosts Clean Ups every Sunday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Submitted photo

Kutztown Community Partnership’s Safe Clean and Green program will hold it’s first annual Safe, Clean & Green volunteer open house on Sunday, Oct. 22, from 3 to 5 p.m. in the back yard at the KCP office’s 306 West Main Street. Volunteers are invited to enjoy light refreshments with other volunteers while meeting new community members looking to get involved in making Kutztown a better place to live, work, and play.

Kutztown Community Partnership supports Kutztown as an inclusive community that welcomes all of our best efforts to get an education, to do business, and to live well at every stage of our lives. KCP facilitates a range of volunteer run programs that make the town a safer, cleaner, and greener environment.

KUBoK is a volunteer coalition comprised of community members and Kutztown University students, staff and faculty. The program started in 2007 in response to the tragic the death of student Kyle Quinn and the increasing response of unlawful behavior on community campuses across the nation. Members of KUBoK work with the Kutztown Borough Police Department by volunteering their time and talent to creating a safer community and improving the relationship between Kutztown University students and residents of Kutztown. Volunteers walk during peak social hours during the school year on Thursday, Friday, and Saturdays evenings and offer services such as safe escort and maintaining a safe presence in the community in the late hours. Thanks to KUBoK, all members of the Kutztown Community have been able to come together and make a difference in the lives of people who might not otherwise feel safe or secure in their own town.

“I’ve been walking with KuBok since I was a freshman,” said Cole Mitchell, a KU student. “It’s a great way to give back and make the community a safer place. Volunteering with KCP has even influenced my decision to study social work and continue to make a concrete impact in my community.”

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The Safe Clean and Green Clean Ups held every Sunday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. are another great way for all community members to get involved in creating a better Kutztown. Students and faculty from Kutztown Area High School, Kutztown University, local churches, and other community groups have all come out to walk Main Street and the surrounding areas on Sundays to pick up trash and unsightly garbage.

In the 2016-2017 school year nearly 500 people came out to get involved and it has truly made an impact on the environment and the way Kutztown is seen by its own community and others. The program was originally created by a KCP volunteer with the goal of engaging diverse segments of the Kutztown community in a common, positive program to make Kutztown a cleaner and healthier community for everyone to live in and enjoy. Five years later, this program is still going strong, and continues to meet that goal.

“I look forward to the clean ups because I’m able to improve my community in a way that has positive impacts on both the environment and the community health. It’s also very rewarding when someone passing on the street stops to thank us for our efforts,” said Kutztown Area High School junior Madison Wolf.

Kutztown Thriving is a program committed to sustaining a healthy community through positive solutions and holistic endeavors. Started in January 2016, Kutztown Thriving’s first project was to create local native plant gardens that attract and support pollinators creating a healthier environment in Kutztown in a sustainable way.

During the spring of 2017, they moved toward a focus on the arts by conducting a hand-painted rain barrel auction. Rain Barrels were painted by local artists and auctioned off to collect funds to promote the mission and projects of Kutztown Thriving and the sustainable practice of collecting and effectively using the resource of natural water in the Kutztown Community. This group consists of community members, students, and KU professors and is not only about making Kutztown greener, but promoting a healthier, happier community for all.

“Volunteering with Kutztown Thriving and KCP gave me the opportunity to coordinate and experience the town folk and residential life of Kutztown, that in turn decided that Kutztown was where I wanted to lay my roots,” said KCP Dinner on Main event co-chair Tiffanie Devos-Little, a Kutztown resident. “As a person who wants to start and grow a business in the town, what better way is there to mingle than by volunteering with groups that care about the sustainability and opportunity in our community.”

Peace Love and Kutztown is a program at KCP involving staff and students from the Kutztown Area School District and Kutztown University, and other Kutztown community members. The program is designed to promote awareness and share information in efforts to create a safe, welcoming and inclusive community for all residents. The program’s mission to start meaningful and productive dialogues regarding social justice have lead to Social Justice Chats held in local businesses and artistic collaborations between educators in the Design Department at Kutztown University and Kutztown School District’s middle and high school students.

“Peace Love and Kutztown just makes sense, and I get a chance to talk with other people and learn what they have to say about important social justice issues,” said Kutztown School District 8th grader Sophia Arnold.

All of these programs offer volunteer hours and opportunities for Kutztown residents. It is a great way to meet people, share ideas, and make a positive impact in the Kutztown community.

For more information contact the Kutztown Community Partnership at 484-646-9069 or kcp@hometownu.com. The KCP office at 306 West Main Street is also open Monday to Friday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.