Church, community members lend a helping hand

Monte Vista cleanup 1

LANCASTER  – Local members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints joined with representatives of Monte Vista Elementary School and community members Saturday to participate in Mormon Helping Hands, an annual service project carried out by Church members around the world. Today’s project marked the second day in a two-part effort to patch, prime and paint Monte Vista Elementary School.

“We are proud to partner with Lancaster School District and Monte Vista Elementary School to provide this service to the youth of our community,” said Bryan Crawley, Lancaster Stake President for the LDS Church. “When these organizations band together, amazing things can happen.”

Monte Vista cleanup 2Saturday’s project began on April 27, when congregations from East Lancaster patched, primed and prepared the school for painting. On the same date, congregations from Palmdale worked with the City of Palmdale to plant trees at Pelona Vista Park.

In all, more than 600 volunteers participated in this year’s Antelope Valley Mormon Helping Hands event, providing over 1,900 hours of service to the community.

Lancaster congregations also donated approximately 600 pounds of food to Grace Resource Center and the Lancaster Homeless Shelter in conjunction with the event.

Monte Vista cleanup 3“Mormon Helping Hands provides a tremendous opportunity for us to serve,” said Kevin Cordes, president of the Lancaster East Stake of the LDS Church. “We seek opportunities for service throughout the year, but on this single day, hundreds turn out and work side-by-side to contribute to our community. It is truly inspiring.”

Church members in Lancaster worked with Lancaster School District to identify a service project for this year’s event.

At more than 60 years old, Monte Vista had recently won paint and primer to beautify the campus in a national competition, and members of the school’s Parents Association (PA) were seeking a way to obtain the significant number of volunteers needed to paint the campus.

“It was a natural fit,” said PA President Kim Cook. “The Church provided not only hundreds of volunteers, but also skilled craftsmen with the expertise needed to guarantee that the work would be done properly and last well into the future. It was amazing to see so many people come out and get involved in our schools. We’d like to thank each and every one of the volunteers for helping make our school a more beautiful place for the children to be.”

For more information about Mormon Helping Hands, visit

(Information via press release from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.)