Students, Alumni to Volunteer in Dove Springs and Onion Creek Plantation Communities on Feb. 25

Event:   The Project 2012

When:  Saturday, Feb. 25, 8:30 a.m.-5 p.m.

Where:  Dove Springs and Onion Creek Plantation Communities; Mendez Middle School (5106 Village Square) is the event headquarters.

Background: The Project, the largest community service event for University of Texas at Austin students, will be held Saturday, Feb. 25, in the Dove Springs and Onion Creek Plantation communities. Worksites include River City Youth Foundation, Dove Springs Recreation Center, Blazier Elementary School and Mendez Middle School, where volunteers will make repairs, paint, clean-up trash, plant trees, and make improvements to landscape.

More than 2,100 volunteers including students from The University of Texas at Austin and St. Edward's University and alumni from the Austin chapter of the Texas Exes are expected to participate. The day will begin at Mendez Middle School with an opening ceremony at 8:30 a.m. The ceremony will be repeated at noon as volunteers arrive for the afternoon shift. There will be an opportunity for media and sponsors to talk with the student organizers of the Project from 9:15 to 10 a.m. after the opening ceremony.

As part of The Project, a community health fair will be held at Mendez Middle School from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Area businesses and organizations such as Smile Center Dental, the Sustainable Food Center, H-E-B and Seton Healthcare will provide resources and host workshops throughout the day that are aimed at helping families make health and wellness a priority in their daily routines.

Established in 1999 by the Volunteer and Service Learning Center, The Project is organized by students and is a collaboration among students, city government agencies, community organizations and local businesses. Since its inception, The Project has involved nearly 20,000 student volunteers completing more than 64,000 hours of community service in 10 Austin neighborhoods.