Vienna Boy Scout organizes bottled water drive

 One girls boy scout group in Ionia County is working their way up to become Eagle Scouts.
One girls boy scout group in Ionia County is working their way up to become Eagle Scouts. (WILX)
Published: Aug. 6, 2020 at 3:02 PM EDT
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VIENNA, W.Va. (WTAP) - Vienna Boy Scout Joseph Auch has organized a bottled water drive for the Latrobe Street Mission taking place on Sunday, August 9 from 12 P.M. to 1 P.M. at the Wayside United Methodist Church.

John Shepard, charter representative for the church who liaises between the scouts and the church, said Auch and his family volunteered to help serve Thanksgiving dinner at the Latrobe Street Mission last year and he was eager to work with the organization again. And with the high temperatures the area has been experiencing recently, the mission has been seeing an increased demand for water. Auch added that his father, Jonathan Auch, and Scout Troop 20 were happy to help plan the event.

“With the communication through [Zoom], we were able to get the word out to our troop pretty easily, and then the troop helped spread the word from there,” Auch said, adding that he could envision the troop working with Latrobe Street Mission again in the future.

Shepard explained that Auch had been eager to volunteer again since his experience at Thanksgiving, but has been unable to do so until recently due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

“Since the beginning of the year, there hasn’t really been an opportunity for [Auch] to volunteer because we’ve shut down some of our operations for scouting. But he was persistent enough that he talked to his dad and said, ‘Hey, I’ve got this idea, as hot as it is, they’ve got to need water, so we should call and talk to them,’” Shepard said.

According to Shepard, Auch wanted to do more than donate a few cases of water himself, and envisioned an event that would encourage the community to donate, as well.

“He really wanted to turn it into something, and it seems to have really taken off. And the church is very supportive of it. Our pastor got behind it and said they could set up in our parking lot...It’s an exciting thing, that his desire to serve has really grown into something,” Shepard said.

All donations will be collected in a zero contact manner. Those donating water will drive through the church’s parking lot and drop off their cases of water, which will then be collected by the scouts, who will be following appropriate safety practices.

To learn more about the event, visit its Facebook page.

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