Home > Eureka California, Jefferson School > Jefferson School clean-up, fundraiser

Jefferson School clean-up, fundraiser

Humboldt State University students will devote half their Cesar Chavez holiday to help refurbish the site of the former Jefferson Elementary School in Eureka.

The city’s Westside Community Improvement Association proposed the project, which will be carried out by Youth Educational Services (Y.E.S.), HSU’s student-run volunteer organization.

Rain or shine, 75-100 Y.E.S. volunteers will take part in the Serve-a-Thon on March 30 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Jefferson Elementary. They will weed the school’s playground, carry out landscape work and prepare a retaining wall for a mural painting.

These same students offer three to five hours a week to one of 15 Y.E.S. programs that address a host of unmet needs in North Coast communities. The Serve-a-Thon will enable students from different Y.E.S. programs to team up and combine their volunteer efforts.

The project coincides with Y.E.S.’s annual fundraising drive in March, when HSU students and staff dispatch appeal mailers to family and friends. Y.E.S. volunteers contribute thousands of hours annually.

The Westside Community Improvement Association launched the revitalization six years ago when Eureka City Schools closed Jefferson because of declining enrollment citywide. The school stands at the center of the Westside neighborhood, and its facilities and playground were second homes to community children and families for more than 70 years.

The Westside group embarked on a succession of repairs,

improvements and maintenance at the site, which serves a low-income, ethnically diverse neighborhood. The association is a nonprofit founded to combat blight and revitalize neighborhoods with better educational, recreational and vocational opportunities in greater Eureka.

Information about the March 30 Serve-a-Thon is available from Mary Stuart at 826-4965 or mhs7001@humboldt.edu

Details of the Jefferson Project are posted at www.jefferson-project.org.

  1. A Parent
    March 28, 2012 at 12:48 pm

    It’s a shame more organizations don’t celebrate the holiday (it’s a service holiday). Last year, one grade level at Morris Elementary in McKinleyville made 300 sandwiches for Betty Chinn to distribute (which she did that same evening). This year, all classes will participate over a week, making 300 per day all next week.

    HSU itself will be closed on Friday, but it’s good to know some of the students will still be doing service-learning.

  2. Heidi Benzonelli
    March 28, 2012 at 12:57 pm

    Friends Neighbors and Community Partners,

    Please help us raise $10,000 for playground equipment for the kids.

    Westside Community Improvement Association (WCIA) is kicking off the Spring season with a Fundraising Campaign to raise money for the Jefferson Community Playground. We have had a lot going on and figured it was time to share some of our success.

    This year has been a BUSY YEAR! And THIS COMMUNITY IS AWESOME!!!!! As 2011 came to a close the Eureka First United Methodist Church blessed us with a shared offering from their Advent Tea and we rang in the new year with a Grant through the Alexander and Timothy Salvos Fund for Youth to help with renovations of an ADA Bathroom, getting the kitchen up to steam permit standards, and renovations of a community meeting room. We have been approved as Polling Place for the June and November elections. We have had about ½ a dozen community workdays and over 150 signed in volunteers.
    On March 30th HSU YES will bring 100 volunteers to help with grounds-keeping, graffiti removal and prep for a big mural. On March 31st AMERICORPS and the Community will come together for public work day on the inside of the building and Interact (Youth Rotary) will have a play area for the kids. On April 19th and HSU Engineering team will be teaching a multi lingual workshop on vermicomposting. On April 28th we will be the lucky beneficiaries of SPRING BINGO! A Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence Bingo at the Eureka Inn in the Big Ballroom (we are looking for Volunteers and donations of prizes). On May 3rd the Department of Public Health will be having a Community Dinner and workshop about food security and access to nutritious food on the Westside. An HSU Group is building a composting system to handle all the green waste we produce on site and we are planning a Comedy Show. That is really just a skim off the top, we have A LOT going on. We have a facebook page http://www.facebook.com/Jefferson.Project and a website http://www.jefferson-project.org check them out and “like” us if you get the chance!

    Right now we are planning a Playground Building event. We have a couple of grant applications out there and some organizations willing send lots of volunteers, we just need to raise some money. Our goal is $10,000 we already have some of it raised, but we are reaching out to the community for help. This Summer with your help, the kids on the Westside are going to have a safe place to play and some equipment to play on! Please help if you can, we have been able to leverage every dollar 10 fold by matching it with volunteer labor and donated materials. Together, this community is making it happen.

    Tax deductible donations can be mailed to:

    Westside Community Improvement Association
    P.O. Box 5315
    Eureka CA 95502

    WCIA Sponsors Include but are not limited to:

    OBD Plumbing
    TNT Roofing
    Trinidad Electric
    Redwood Coast Energy Watch
    K&M Glass
    Henderson Center Bicycles
    Pierson’s Building Center
    Humboldt First Five
    Humboldt Area Foundation
    Eureka First United Methodist Church
    Redwood Community Action Agency
    Richard Daly Incorporated
    Velluntini Baking Company
    Himalayan Rug Company
    Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence
    The Eureka Inn
    Acme Graphics
    Graphics West
    and more

  3. A-nony-mouse
    March 28, 2012 at 8:13 pm

    Raingear may be the dress code for the day but I know it won’t dampen anyone’s spirits.
    The Westside is AWESOME!!!

  4. Gil Yule
    March 29, 2012 at 6:57 am

    I love these guys!

  5. Heidi Benzonelli
    March 29, 2012 at 5:35 pm

    If you are coming tomorrow, bring a lunch, we will have some healthy nutritious snacks, hot chocolate, coffee, and tea but no formal meal.

    If you are coming Saturday we will have a light nutritious lunch. Saturday Interact (Youth Rotary) will have a kids activity room.

    We are are working both days rain or shine. So Bring Rain Gear because a lot of the projects ARE outside.

    If you just want to help out and have something you like to do, like clean windows, mop, bring your own stuff. we have tons of tools to work outside though.

    Thanks to Piersons Building Center we have bare root apple trees, blueberries, artichokes, rosemary and strawberries and plenty of places to plant them.

    We have weed mat, pins, pruners, green waste dumpsters rooms to organize and rooms to clean.

    But mostly, we have each other these work-parties are awesome community building events.

    Come join us at Jefferson (10 am both days)

  6. Heidi Benzonelli
    March 30, 2012 at 8:56 pm

    See pictures of our workday at


    Wow what powerhouses!

    Thank you to all the volunteers. we will be at it again tomorrow!!!! Woo Hoo!

  7. tra
    March 30, 2012 at 10:36 pm

    I was disappointed that I didn’t see HiFi there, wearing an ascot, as he suggested he might do a while back. Maybe tomorrow?


  8. High Finance
    March 31, 2012 at 4:59 pm

    Maybe I was there and just forgot my Ascot Tra.

    Can’t make it tomorrow have to go to Willow Creek.

  9. Heidi Benzonelli
    March 31, 2012 at 8:29 pm

    Another AWESOME DAY!!! I LOVE EUREKA!!!!!!!

  10. Heidi Benzonelli
    March 31, 2012 at 8:40 pm

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