A team of Westinghouse Savannah River Co. employees got to spend Friday at camp - Girl Scout camp.
The 10 men and a woman weren't roasting marshmallows and singing campfire songs. They were performing manual labor - braving the sticky humidity while re-screening 15 cabins at Camp Tanglewood as part of United Way of the CSRA's Project Serve.
"I sit back in a chair all day," said Chris Fortunato, of the project'sengineering and construction division. "But it gives you a good feeling - helping."
Fortunato never has participated in Project Serve before but has similar experience in the United Way's Project Vision, where volunteers help needy citizens in the community.
Project Serve, now in its second year, is a one-day event in which employees volunteer through their companies to form teams. The teams are matched to projects that need to be done for United Way member agencies, said Natasha Dyer, a United Way spokeswoman. Tasks can vary from repair and maintenance to painting and landscaping.
While the 11-person WSRC team was at camp, 13 other teams worked at other United Way agencies, including the Salvation Army, Senior Citizens Council, Friendship Community Center and the United Way office on Ellis Street.
"It is hands-on volunteering," Dyer said. "It takes it a step further because they are doing a little more than maybe visiting. They are actually helping to enhance the agency in some way. It becomes an educational process for the volunteers because they learn more about the agency."
The camp's ranger, Charles Hiers, has a part-time assistant, but usually takes care of the off-season list of chores himself at the camp and other Scout sites around the area.
"It is a great help to us and we are very grateful," Hiers said.
Fortunato and the other members of the self-proclaimed A-Team - Nazir Sheikh, Sherie Green and Bill Wingfield - worked quickly as if they were racing the other groups, all of whom were on their day off or United Way Day. They had fun with the power tools and each other, but all worked hard for the cause.
"It is a community outreach to help and give something back to the community," Sheikh said.
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