filled the streets of one of Oceanside’s blighted neighborhoods on Saturday,
October 26th for the “Oceanside SUN Project (Supporting Urban
Neighborhoods). The SUN Project is an annual event for our neighbors in
Oceanside and each year the Carlsbad and Oceanside congregations of the Church of
Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints are some of it’s largest supporters.
Volunteers, including a large turnout of Carlsbad High School students, painted homes, cleared trash, and spread mulch on empty lots in an effort to improve the overall look and feel of the community.
The city provided the materials and the community provided the manpower. The project was formed years ago and according to Oceanside Mayor Jim Wood, “We do this because the people can’t get the same results by themselves. We do this every year and we get about 1000 people, mostly from the Mormon churches in Oceanside and Carlsbad."
Bishop Skip Johnson of the Carlsbad 1st Ward of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints says of the event, “I like the fact that we have the opportunity to reach out to the neighborhood and help strengthen the community.”
The sight of hundreds of volunteers walking up and down San Diego Street in Oceanside, many with a paintbrush in hand, demonstrated that Johnson was not alone in his desire to help the community. It was an amazing sight to look up the street and see so many projects happening at the same time. The visual improvements to the neighborhood were evident nearly immediately.
Sixteen year old Mikayla Shirley said, “I have a quote that I love hanging up in my bedroom. It says ‘No matter what kind of mood you are in, service will always make you happy.’ So that’s why I’m here.”
The happiness she found in serving was clear as she worked to paint a worn out fence with a group of friends.
Paul Robinson, the owner of one of the buildings being painted was grateful for the help. He said, “It’s like manna from heaven. This is a graphic illustration of many hands make light work.”