Wolves Organization Volunteers At American Indian Family Center

Andrea Allis
Web Editorial Associate


If anyone knows about lending a helping hand, it’s the American Indian Family Center. An organization that serves 800 families per year through counseling, employment, family and youth services, the American Indian Family Center was on the receiving end of a different kind of support Tuesday.

The Minnesota Timberwolves and Lynx organizations participated in a volunteer day made possible by Drops of Good: The Maxwell House Community Project in partnership with Rebuilding Together in which Timberwolves and Lynx staff members completed projects including landscaping, interior and exterior painting and carpet and ceiling tile installation.

"With the Timberwolves in the off-season and the Lynx on Olympic Break, this was a great opportunity to bring out more than 70 of our staff members to help renovate the American Indian Family Center," said Kristin Mehrwerth, Timberwolves and Lynx community relations coordinator.

Rebuilding Together organized the projects volunteers worked on throughout the day, and executive director Kathy Greiner said that the main goal was to finish the two sides of the building that hadn't yet been touched. Volunteers were able to get the entire building painted and update the lobby with new carpet, ceiling tiles and paint.

The Timberwolves were in charge of renovating and redecorating the kids’ space in the front lobby, including a book corner, furniture, toy storage, coloring books, chalk boards and a basketball hoop.

The renovation plan also included making a teaching kitchen out of two existing rooms, Greiner said. "Now, they'll be able to host clients in the kitchen and teach them how to cook healthy meals, how to bring back some of the native dishes that they're used to, but so that not everything is fried."

Greiner and Janice LaFloe, director of development and marketing for the American Indian Family Center, agreed that the Timberwolves and Lynx volunteers made a big difference.

"They came and worked hard, worked quickly, and they got a ton of projects completed," LaFloe said. "Our building looks great, and we're very appreciative, very thankful for all their hard work."

"I was getting things ready at 10 last night and overwhelmed by how we were going to get it all done," Greiner said. "And then I walk outside at 10:30 this morning, and the Timberwolves had all the painting done already. It was amazing."

Greiner also said that the volunteers went above and beyond, finishing more than they hoped to accomplish in the day.

"We actually have a group of folks lined up to do some things tomorrow, but I think we'll be able to cancel it because we got all the work done," Greiner said.

The Timberwolves and Lynx staff had a good time and were excited about the progress, as well as the opportunity to collectively give back to a worthy organization.

“Community involvement is a key pillar of the Minnesota Timberwolves and Lynx organizations,” Mehrwerth said. “So it’s important to all of us that we roll up our sleeves and do what we can to help out the community that supports our teams.”

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