By Lend Lease staff
On September 18th and 19th Lend Lease sent almost 30 volunteers to transform the Incarnation backyard into a completely new space. An affiliate of Catholic Charities, Incarnation Children’s Center is the only New York skilled nursing facility that provides specialized care for children and adolescents living with HIV/AIDS.
Lend Lease Community Day has been operating since 1996 and occurs in September each year. This much-loved initiative gives employees the opportunity to give back to communities where we live and work. Employees’ skills are matched with community needs, supporting a range of projects that address social, economic and environmental issues. Each year teams of employees design, build, garden, clean, demolish, pack, plan, paint, repair and teach, alongside our community partners and often our subcontractors and business partners. All employees are encouraged to participate, and since its inception, over 500,000 Lend Lease volunteer hours have been volunteered across hundreds of community projects around the world.
Day One involved prepping the area for painting. The next day included laying tarps, trimming shrubs, cleaning up the area. Volunteers even spruced up the garden and outdoor window boxes by bringing and planting harvest mums and ivy.
Day Two was a ten-hour + painting extravaganza. Volunteers showed up at 8am and some didn’t leave until well after 6pm. The level of dedication was humbling. It was evident that each person truly wanted to give back to their community and to the children at the Center by making the mural as beautiful and perfect as possible. The Lend Lease volunteer team was amazing – each person took on a task, whether it be an area or a particular color, and completed their assignment with a combination of creativity and caring.
By the end of the day, the plain, drab fence was completely transformed into a garden of Eden! Flower gardens, majestic mountains, lazy shade trees, and a lake with water lilies are among the details that one can find when looking at the new mural. Staff and Incarnation Children’s Center residents alike were both impressed and thankful for the job that Lend Lease did in less than two days Incarnation Children’s Center now has a truly magnificent mural that has permanently improved both the environment that these children live in as well as their quality of life. For an escape from every day worries, we can now use the backyard therapeutic mural to temporarily transport ourselves into an idyllic landscape.
Special thanks to Catholic Charities for bringing Incarnation Children’s Center and Lend Lease together and to the amazing group of volunteers!