Yuma, Arizona - City of Yuma Mayor Douglas Nicholls invites Yuma residents and friends to come together for a volunteer community clean-up alongside local leaders on Saturday, March 16. Day of Unity III will kick off at 8 a.m. at Kennedy Park (2251 S. Kennedy Lane), aiming to beautify and cleanup areas while bridging gaps in the community. The event will run through approximately noon, and finish with a community art project.

This is the third Day of Unity under Nicholls' leadership, and will be a blend of clean-up efforts in various locations throughout the community that need major assistance. Mayor Nicholls will kick-off the event at 8 a.m. by speaking alongside Chief of Police John Lekan and several other community leaders to highlight the importance of bridging gaps and helping others.

How to participate:

The idea for Day of Unity III arose in the fall of 2018, after the Yuma community came together to want to help eradicate graffiti, vandalism and hate speech on a local art mural which was once-vandalized at the corner of 4th Avenue and 3rd Street. The mural, which is part of the Mural-A-Month Program, was restored the same day. Mayor Nicholls wants to show the Yuma community's giving nature in wanting to make our community a better place.

"Immediately after it happened, the Yuma community responded by wanting to help and to fix it," Mayor Nicholls said of the vandalism. "It showed not only that this type of crime is not tolerated in the community, but that Yumans are so big-hearted in wanting to help those in need... I hope this third Day of Unity brings the public a chance to help in that same way, and to take care of a diverse range of neighborhoods."

The City of Yuma has an anti-graffiti program in place, which have been engaged in discussions. The graffiti abatement team works to remove graffiti as soon as it is reported, and this Day of Unity will be separate and distinct from those efforts. Volunteers will have the opportunity to assist hands-on to show that Yuma stands behind having a community that is taken care of and that we can all be proud of. Additionally, some other areas will be available for clean-up depending on the amount of volunteers.

Once the clean-up is complete, volunteers will regroup for an art project. The project will aim to capture the message of unity, by having each volunteer have their handprint set on a mural.

There is no cost to participate. Residents under 18 must be accompanied by a parent or guardian.