September 8, 2012
Candi Higley - Daily Herald
PAYSON -- Barnett Elementary was crowded with volunteers on Friday as part of a local business's fourth annual Day of Service. Fishbowl, an inventory management company in Orem, shut its doors for one day to give employees and their family members the chance to give back to the community.
"It is unique to have a CEO allow his business to shut down for a whole day," said Cade Close, a salesman at Fishbowl. "I have been in charge of our Day of Service for the past four years and it has been great to watch our employees serve together."
Close got the idea from an accounting firm he worked for previously that performed service for the community nationwide. Each year Fishbowl picks a project that it feels will have the greatest effect on the community. In the past, the Fishbowl employees have served at Cherry Creek Elementary in Springville, organizing computer labs and libraries; repairing the playground area for House of Hope, a treatment center for women and children; and painted buildings, removed brush and cleaned the playground areas at Mountainland Head Start.
This year employees gathered at Barnett Elementary just before 9 a.m. They received assignments to help in various classrooms.
"Our teachers were so excited to have the volunteers interact with students in the classroom for the first part of the day," said Principal Angela Stoddard. "The students were also excited to have the volunteers there. They have been looking forward to it."
Volunteers also completed a huge project at the school. They sorted, bagged, barcoded and labeled, and reorganized books in the school's leveled library, a resource that provides reading materials specific to each child's reading level.
"I am so ecstatic to have the Fishbowl volunteers helping with our leveled library," Stoddard said. "I had planned to work on this all summer, but the volunteers scheduled this with us in the spring and freed up my time this summer to accomplish other things at our school. I am so grateful."
Other projects at the event included putting together learning kits, repairing the school's picnic tables and refurbishing the children's "wall ball" structure.
The Fishbowl volunteers were excited to be able to give back to the community.
"We are open to help wherever," said Lindsey Shores. "It is fun to help those who need an extra hand. It is extra satisfying to be able to see the end result and see how excited those we are helping get because of what we have done."
"Watching our employees serve gives us a sense of gratitude," Close said. "We have received a lot of positive feedback. We all have a lot of fun."