By Rose L. Thayer
Killeen Daily Herald

Saturday is the day to make a difference.

Killeen, along with Fort Hood, will observe national Make a Difference Day for the 18th year by asking citizens to come out and volunteer in their communities.

There are 129 projects scheduled for the day but only 90 of those have volunteer commitments so far, said Wilfred Brewster, Killeen’s volunteer services director. There are many service opportunities left and volunteers often reap benefits from their efforts, he added.

“There are several benefits,” said Brewster. “The first thing, of course, is the sense of camaraderie, the esprit de corps of individuals and groups involved. Second, it enhances the well-being of our citizens in the community when they are able to have their needs met.”

Projects planned for Saturday include food donation drives for Killeen and Fort Hood food banks, renovating and cleaning American Legion Post 223 and the beautification of Cove House Emergency Homeless Shelter. Brewster said youth also will paint 18 memorial crosses Mothers Against Drunk Driving members have put around town to signify where accidents occurred.

Killeen also will kick butts.

“One of the unique projects is the Keep Killeen Beautiful Committee is sponsoring a campaign against cigarette butts,” said Brewster. The committee will pass out 500 pocket ashtrays as part of their “Keep your butts in the car,” campaign on the corner of W.S. Young Drive and Veterans Memorial Boulevard, in front of the Killeen Community Center.

“It will keep the area beautiful and facilitate safety,” said Brewster.

Last year’s Make a Difference Day accomplished the same amount of projects, but it brought out 17,000 volunteers. Only about 7,000 have registered for Saturday.

Killeen will kick off Make a Difference Day at 8 a.m. at the Killeen Community Center. The first 100 to arrive will get a free T-shirt. All volunteers will be honored with a banquet on Nov. 1.

To get involved, contact Brewster at (254) 501-7878.

Keep Temple Beautiful event

Keep Temple Beautiful is hosting an electronic waste recycling event open to all of Bell County and the surrounding areas in conjunction with Make a Difference Day.

“Electronic waste is one of the fastest growing categories of municipal solid waste, so recycling makes sense,” said Tanya Gray, executive director of Keep Temple Beautiful.

Accepted items include kitchen appliances, vacuums, curling irons, electric toothbrushes, digital cameras, cassette tapes, car batteries and a variety of power cords and chargers.

According to the Environmental Protection Agency, 82 percent of the 2.25 million tons of old televisions, mobile phones and computer products disposed of in the last two years has ended up in landfills. By recycling old products, useful materials such as glass, plastic and metals can be collected and reused to manufacture other products.

“The overwhelming conclusion is that recycling boosts the economy, conserves natural resources while reducing solid waste,” said Gray. “Green is no longer a fad; it is the reality of future business and management. Being environmentally responsible all comes down to choice, and isn’t it time we made the right one?”

All electronic waste can be delivered from 9 a.m. to noon at Holy Trinity Catholic High School, 6608 W. Adams Ave. in Temple. For more information and a complete list of accepted items, visit