Volunteers freshen up almost two dozen homes and businesses in Keewatin during Day of Action

Day of Action helps freshen up Keewatin neighborhoods

A look at how volunteers made a big difference across the small town of Keewatin during the Day of Action.

A great day to get out and do some good in Keewatin. 125 volunteers worked on nearly two dozen projects around town during the 2024 Day of Action.

The United Way of Northeastern Minnesota, City of Keewatin, Itasca County Habitat for Humanity, and Community and Economic Development Associates organized this effort.

Sarah Carling, Regional Director of CEDA, shared, “We’ve got an aging population in rural places. And they can’t always climb up on ladders and clean gutters. So these small projects really revitalize the community, and bring some hope to communities that are not always seen.”

Homeowners and small businesses submitted project requests ranging from basic landscaping and painting to garage door repair. They provide the materials, and the volunteers provide the manpower.

One homeowner, Karen Koprivec, is recovering from a brain tumor. So she was very appreciative of the work done on her home.

Presenting sponsor U.S. Steel owns Keetac, which is right in town.

Chrissy Bartovich, from U.S. Steel, said, “When you think of Keewatin, people think of Keetac. For us to be able to sponsor and be involved is really great. And the feedback from residents has been exciting to see today.”

To date, the Day of Action has been held in Grand Rapids, Bovey, Coleraine, and Deer River. It started with Rapids based United Way of 1000 Lakes, and this is the first year it’s branched out to the UWNEMN, which is in Chisholm.

Executive Director of UWNEMN, Erin Shay, told us they are thrilled to be able to partner this time around.

It’s their biggest Day of Action to date. And the Executive Director of Itasca County Habitat for Humanity couldn’t be more pleased. Jamie Mjolsness Gibeau said, “I’m so pumped, that residents wanted so much work done. And all those volunteers who showed up today made it possible.”

Mayor Mick LaBine said he’s very grateful for the volunteers.

There is also a Day of Action planned with the United Way of 1000 Lakes for June 21st in Marble.