On Saturday, April 22, community leaders and residents around the Westwood neighborhood got together to make a difference in the community. Go: Westwood happens every year and it is a volunteer effort to spruce up Denver’s Westwood neighborhood, while cultivating community among the residents.
“Go: Westwood is a great way to get volunteers and residents participating. To see the long- term community change that we all want, people must stay involved in their community,” said Councilman Paul D. López, who represents the area.
More than 500 volunteers worked alongside Westwood residents cleaning alleys and removing graffiti, doing community art projects, preparing gardens for planting, and doing cleanups on Morrison Road and Alameda Avenue – all in an effort to revitalize the Westwood neighborhood, one block at a time.
We got some quotes from some of the Group Leaders on their perspective of the Work Day and the Westwood Neighborhood. These remarkable leaders are helping to pave the way to a cleaner more vibrant Westwood community.
Jose Esparaza, BuCu West
“The best thing about the day is we are all working together in one spot. You can see the change really significantly. The great thing about Westwood is the community – people wave at you and it’s really welcoming.”
Bethany Narajka, Castro Elementary
Jessica Perry, Knapp Knights
“The day was good. Having Westwood Unidos join our team was very helpful, the clean up went so fast that the Knapp parent volunteers moved on with WU team to tackle other alleys while me and my students started the fence weaving.”
Eric Hofschire, Heritage High School
“The kids volunteering today are with a student government group. We do a couple community service projects each semester. The thing that is fantastic about this year is how many people turned out. Things went really well.”
Angel Ruiz, Educational Talent Search
“Extreme Community Makeover does all the leg work, which makes it easy for us to plug into what is already being done. Up until now, I did not know Westwood from any other community here in Denver. We’ve had the opportunity to meet some friendly residents. The community seems very appreciative of the work that is being done.”
James Fernandez, Redeemer Lutheran Church
“It’s a diversity of people out here to gather together to make our community better. It really helps out a lot to show that this part of Denver is loved and cared for. It’s awesome!”
Kevin Plack, South Pearl Church
“Westwood is very multicultural. It was cool to see the presentation this morning with speaking in English and Spanish. Not only is the Westwood community here, but people from all over Denver are coming together to help out this neighborhood.”
Ed Culley, The Mission Continues
Emily Thomas, Westwood Unidos / La Casita
“I was grateful to be a part of the whole. I was surprised how quickly the day went. We all had our eyes to the ground and we covered a lot of area.”
Other Group Leaders:
Mark Beasley, Abraham Lincoln High School Junior ROTC
Gordon Alley, Cornerstone Baptist Church
Theresa Vinnedge, Gen X Christian Singles
Lisa Reiswig, Lisa’s Friends
Sia Hancock, North Highland Consulting
Norma Garfio-Saenz, Munroe Elementary School
Amy Zalewski, Shiny Riff-Raff
Kayla Sterner, Individuals
Norma Brambila, Westwood Unidos Safety Committee