The 2016-17 WACC VISTA Team participated in a National Day of Service in honor of Dr. King by organizing service projects or volunteering for existing events in their communities. VISTA members rolled up their sleeves to make applesauce, shovel mulch, read to kids, collect food donations, and ask neighbors what their dream is for their community. Read all these stories of service below!
Laurne Terasaki – Food Security Coordinator, University of Washington
A group of 40 students from UW built a quarter mile gravel path in Seattle’s Volunteer Park. The gravel was frozen in two solid piles, so half of the team chipped away with shovels and pick-axes, while the other half spread out loosened gravel, pruned vegetation, and prepared the landscape.
Participating in National Days of Service allows VISTAs to build comradery, engage with the community, and reminds us about the impact that direct service can have: a clear, walkable path can encourage people to spend time outdoors, access the tennis courts along the path, and gives volunteers a sense of investment in their own community.
Greg Gormley – Peer Navigator Coordinator, Spokane Falls Community College
SFCC’s AmeriCorps members and the Associated Student Government organized an event sorting and packaging food for distribution around Eastern Washington at Northwest Harvest in Spokane Valley. Fourteen volunteers participated in the event, and 2,750 pounds of food was sorted and/or packaged, all of which will be distributed locally to those in need.
This volunteer opportunity, more than anything else, helped our group learn more about an organization that does a lot of good in our community. The volunteer coordinator, Katie Huckabee, did a great job explaining how Northwest Harvest was different than a food bank, and how their role is vital to food access for those where it may not be readily available.