Volunteers, mindful of 9/11, rebuild and clean up communities

Armed with push brooms and paint scrapers, volunteers are transforming an old warehouse in Raleigh into an urban agricultural center.

“We're going to teach them how to take the pavement and grow food out of it,” Interfaith Food Shelter Executive Director Jill Bullard said.

Bullard is well on her way thanks to dozens of volunteers cleaning up the inside and outside of that Hoke Street warehouse.

“We're harnessing the power of food for this local community so they can grow their own nutritious food, and they can learn to have an income by selling that food to local restaurants,” Bullard said.

The volunteer effort was just one of about 30 happening across the Triangle this Sept. 11. The nonprofit Activate Good sponsored the day of service. Volunteers, including some NBC-17 employees, got to work shoveling, racking and hoeing gardens at Bugg Elementary. Students there weren't even alive when the attacks happened.

“Even though it's been 11 years, for people that were there, it seems very fresh in our minds,” high school teacher Brent Miller said. “But for the students, they either do not remember or have very little recollection of it.”

It is projects like those that are getting people to not just remember the events of Sept. 11, 2001, but to learn and grow from them too.

“You know, it's to remember that we are a community,” Bullard said. “We're all in it together, and if we don't stand shoulder to shoulder together, then we are lost.”

Activate Good says about 1,000 people volunteered Tuesday across the Triangle.


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