By Sharon Salyer Herald Writer
BOTHELL — Soon to be 9-year-old Jessica Bacon couldn’t have been happier that her new red T-shirt was spattered with white paint.
It was a sign of how hard she had worked Saturday, after receiving tips on how to do her task from pros.
Bacon was among of the youngest of the 60 volunteers who showed up at the New Ground Bothell complex to repaint its six rooms. At this location, the nonprofit provides transitional housing for young, homeless single moms who are either pregnant or who have recently given birth.
A similar project took place Saturday at the New Ground Everett complex near Silver Lake.
Both sites are part of the Friends of Youth organization, which provides emergency and permanent housing and other services to homeless youth.
The two volunteer projects were organized through the Master Builders Care Foundation. It was the seventh annual event, called Painting a Better Tomorrow, in which volunteers undertake painting projects at area nonprofits.
Saturday’s participants at the Bothell complex included members of Professional Women in Building and employees of Iron Brothers Construction.
Between the two sites, more than 100 volunteers participated in the repainting projects, said Jay Schupack, executive director of the Master Builders Care Foundation.
Jessica, who will turn 9 on Monday, and her brother, James, 13, joined their mother, Juli Bacon, of Snohomish at the event in Bothell.
Juli Bacon said she has participated in four of the previous Master Builders painting projects, but this was the first time she had brought her kids.
She said she hoped it would help instill in her children a life-long commitment to serve their community. “I feel it’s really important to help other people,” she said.
One of those giving professional painting tips to Bacon’s two children was Darylene Dennon, who helps run Solid Energy Inc., a Woodinville painting contractor business.
Dennon helped organize Saturday’s event, including asking people to sign up. She didn’t’ have to ask twice.
“All I have to do give a date and a time,” she said. “Professional Women in Building always volunteer.”
Tanya Zimmerman, a staff member who helps supervise the teen moms who live at the Bothell complex, said the efforts by the volunteers mean more to the young women than simply getting a new hue on the walls of their apartments.
The homeless women who are referred to the program are between the ages 16 to 22. Some have been verbally or physically abused, neglected, or involved with gangs, Zimmerman said. Some have lived their cars while they were pregnant.
“The girls are amazed and humbled,” she said, by improvement projects undertaken by volunteers at the complex.
Some of the young women have told her: “I never knew someone who never met me would do this.
“The impact is huge.”
Sharon Salyer: 425-339-3486 or email@example.com