Belk employees give CVES a makeover

Creek View Elementary School students join employees from the Alabaster Belk store before the employees completed several projects at the school. (Reporter Photo/Neal Wagner)

Creek View Elementary School students join employees from the Alabaster Belk store before the employees completed several projects at the school. (Reporter Photo/Neal Wagner)

By NEAL WAGNER / City Editor

Employees at Alabaster’s Belk department store took time away from the business on May 1 to make several upgrades to Creek View Elementary School’s library and school grounds.

From 9-11 a.m., 16 employees from the Alabaster Belk volunteered at the school to build book cases for the school’s library, construct picnic tables for the school grounds and paint inspirational messages on the walls. The volunteers also donated books the store employees collected over the past several weeks, and placed “magic carpet” reading carpets in the school’s library.

The makeover was part of Belk’s 125 days of service in honor of the company’s 125th anniversary. CVES was one of 250 schools across the nation to receive a makeover.

Belk partnered with the Hands on Birmingham organization to coordinate several school makeovers in the Birmingham metropolitan area, said CVES Principal Brent Byars.

“We are excited to have them here. It will better help the kids to understand the relationship between the community and the schools,” Byars said. “We tell them that not long from now, this will be their community and they could be working for or owning a local business.

“Everyone starts in elementary school,” Byars added.

Before the Belk volunteers started working, the school’s gifted resource students gathered in the CVES lobby and spelled out “Belk” using construction paper before shouting “Thank you Belk!”

CVES gifted resource teacher Melissa Foster said the GRC students donated service to others over their Christmas break, and said seeing the Belk employees helped to reinforce the importance of service for the students.

“Helping hands are contagious,” Foster told the kids. “Our friends in the blue Belk shirts are going to give us a helping hand today.”