Being an Americorps VISTA (Volunteers in Service to America), affords me the awesome opportunity to participate in regular service days. A lot of the other VISTAs think it's a real drag, but I absolutely love the opportunity to directly serve people in need, make a measurable difference. and get my hands dirty.
Last week, we were able to help build a community garden at Orville Wright Middle School in Westwood, CA. Although our work was far from finished by the end of the day, we helped build a functional garden in a place that was formerly an empty lot. That felt really good!
I spent the first half of the morning working on the outdoor classroom. It consisted of raking up all the organic matter, shoveling sand and leveling it, compacting the sand, and then placing blocks of "urbanite" (concrete that has been crushed into various sizes). I got to operate the compacter, something all my fellow VISTAs were visibly jealous of ;)
Eventually, we arranged the urbanite into a sunflower pattern, which looked awesome! However, it got too technically complicated for any of us to continue working on it, so we left the outdoor classroom area to the experts and put our busy hands to use weeding.
I had an absolute blast working hard and serving a community, even if it wasn't necessarily my own. I can't wait for the next day of service! I'm crossing my fingers for the food bank!