Sept. 11 inspires thoughts of service

PD Sept. 11

Mayor Ed Honea’s Sept. 11 message:

This time of year marks a solemn occasion for anyone who believes in the unquestionable power of freedom and liberty.

When terrorists hijacked and crashed planes in New York City, Washington, D.C. and Pennsylvania on Sept. 11, 2001, they took the lives of almost 3,000 people and injured countless others. The aftereffects continue for millions of Americans, many of whom are looking for productive ways to honor the victims of that terrible day.

Five years ago, Congress designated September 11th as a National Day of Service and Remembrance. The designation was the culmination of an effort started by 9/11 family members and support groups. They collaborated to establish the charitable service day as a way to remember victims, survivors and others who rose up in service in response to the attacks.

Those of us who live in Southern Arizona have numerous opportunities to spend Sept. 11 and beyond in service of our friends and neighbors.

*The Town and Marana Health Center are partnering with the American Red Cross of Southern Arizona to host a blood drive Sept. 24. The chapter provides services across 23,000 square miles in five counties and three Native American Reservations.

To sign up for the drive, please visit www.redcrossblood.org and enter sponsor code: marana or call 1-800-RED-CROSS. Volunteer opportunities can be found at http://www.redcross.org/support/volunteer.

*The Marana Community Food Bank, which serves the Marana, Rillito and Avra Valley area, is always in need of volunteers and donations. Volunteer opportunities include sorting donated food, packing boxes, pulling carts, registering clients, riding along with the drivers and special events. Hours are flexible.

Cash donations are always welcomed. Through arrangements with local and national providers, the food bank is able to serve more than four meals for every dollar donated.

More information on the food bank can be found at http://communityfoodbank.com/programs-and-services/branch-locations/marana.

*Habitat for Humanity Tucson is in need of financial assistance and helping hands. The organization has worked with several deserving families to construct homes in Marana and is planning more builds in the community. To learn more about opportunities to assist Habitat for Humanity Tucson, please visit http://www.habitattucson.org/.

*The Town’s Volunteers in Police Service program supports and expands the services that the Marana Police Department provides to the community.

VIPs assist with traffic control and parking enforcement, computer and data entry, fingerprinting, administrative duties and more. The time given by volunteers allows officers and staff to devote their efforts to the work they are trained to do.

For more information on the VIPs program, please visit http://www.marana.com/165/Volunteers-in-Police-Service.

The horrible events of Sept. 11, 2001 remain a tragic chapter in our history. But those acts only strengthened our resolve to help our friends and neighbors who are in need. I invite you to participate in the National Day of Service and Remembrance and make volunteerism an important part of your everyday life.

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