Beautiful Day: Retired Cops Out to Change Lives in Alviso Find Their Own Lives Changed

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Retired police officers Bob Froese and Jim Buchanan once looked upon the small low-income San Jose area of Alviso with hardened cops’

Jim Buchanan (left) and Bob Froese

eyes: a place with a few rough characters, and all the social ills that come with being a neighborhood of people living on the margins of society.

But recently, when the two found themselves leading possibly one of the largest community service projects ever in Alviso, their hearts melted and they began to see the neighborhood with softer eyes.

“After our experience here we have a passion for the people of Alviso,” Froese said. He said the stereotypes he once held for the community have completely disappeared. “Our opinions have been changed 180 degrees. We have a deep love and affection for the people now.”

With all the precision of a major police operation, the two marshaled the forces of 600 volunteers last weekend for the “Awaken Alviso” project, one of 17 projects worked on May 16-22 by a San Jose coalition of churches, nonprofits, businesses and governmental agencies called Beautiful Day. [Read more…]

A Beautiful Day in San Jose

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In the midst of the darkness of San Jose’s fiscal state of emergency as declared by Mayor Chuck Reed, a bright day dawned last week for more than a dozen neighborhoods and thousands of the city’s residents thanks to a coalition of public, private, nonprofit and faith-based interests.

Approximately 2,400 volunteers from the coalition Beautiful Day went to work from May 16-22 doing everything from donating blood to hosting a prom for disabled youth, to fixing up schools and dozens of homes throughout the city.
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Hey Silicon Valley, Got Some Time to Help Your Community This Weekend?

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If you’re still making weekend plans, there are some excellent options for making a difference in your community here in the Silicon Valley. 

Beautiful Day is sponsoring numerous projects around the valley this weekend, and volunteers are still needed. Some of the important tasks the group is tackling include doing repair and cleanup work at sites like a local school, a homeless encampment, transitional housing, and individual homes. There’s a blood drive on Sunday at Westgate Church, which by the way, spearheads the coalition of nonprofit and government agencies that make up Beautiful Day.

Saturday is National River Cleanup Day, and there are a bevy of project sites that are still looking for volunteers. Check out the site for the cleanup project nearest you, and contact the site coordinator to signup.