TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – HandsOn Jacksonville earned some well-deserved recognition at the Governor's Mansion on Tuesday night, as the group was honored with a reception attended by Florida Gov. Rick Scott.
The statewide volunteer organization also received a chance to spotlight its positive impact on the community.
“It's just tremendous,” said Michael Fleming, a retired brigadier general in the Florida National Guard, and the chairman of the Board of Directors for HandsOn Jacksonville. “I think it recognizes what HandsOn Jacksonville does, not only for the city of Jacksonville and the community of Jacksonville, (but) really throughout Florida.”
Joined by other board members, the group of volunteers enjoyed its time at the celebration in Tallahassee.
“They're mentors (or) maybe (they) volunteer (at) their schools,” Scott said. “They do things around their church, so I'm appreciative of whatever is being done. People give their time (and) people give their money just to help others.”
LeAnn Daddario, the CEO of HandsOn Jacksonville, attended, as well.
“Well, I think it's really a message of what we do locally -- boots on the ground in Jacksonville (and) in the five-county area,” Daddario said. “So, that's why we're here tonight. To support that. To talk a little bit about what we do locally in many different areas.”
Other people, including those with the state's commission on volunteerism, Volunteer Florida, flocked to the event, too. Fleming said this was an opportunity to let the community know about the unique nature of HandsOn Jacksonville.
“I think one of the biggest things (is), we were talking earlier about it -- it's the fact that we try to connect other nonprofits and help make other nonprofits better,” Fleming said. “Every nonprofit is led normally by people with a big heart. But a lot of times, they need organization skills, access to funds (or) resources. … HandsOn Jacksonville is the leader in making sure other nonprofits are successful.”
HandsOn Jacksonville works to inspire and mobilize volunteers.
Partnering with News4Jax in November, HandsOn Jacksonville saw local people pledge more than 100,000 volunteer hours for 2017.