The number of volunteers exceeds the goal of 55,000 that Fischer had set for the For Give A Day Week, which was an official Kentucky Derby Festival event. Volunteers included more than 48,000 Jefferson County Public Schools students and teachers who made contributions such as writing letters to soldiers and collecting food for tornado victims. Another 9,000 volunteers cleaned neighborhoods with Brightside.
The service projects began April 14 with the Ali Shuffle, which helped raise funds for at-risk youths to attend college. It ended April 22 with Ursuline Sisters and associates delivering cookies to people eating dinner at the St. Vincent de Paul Open Hand Kitchen.
Next year’s event again will be held during the week leading up to Thunder Over Louisville, which will be April 13 to 21.
“The inaugural Give A Day initiative was a tremendous success and should have an even greater impact in years to come as an official event on the Kentucky Derby Festival schedule,” said Kentucky Derby Festival Inc. president and CEO Mike Berry in the news release. “During Give A Day, approximately 1,200 volunteers worked KDF events, contributing about 7,285 hours of service to our events.”
Fischer said the Give A Day event would not have happened if not for Metro United Way, which matched volunteers with projects and needy organizations.