Over the few weeks I’ve dedicated to NYC, & under the many conditions that have challenged my metal, I’ve become accustomed to the litany of surprises and the fortitude to face the issues as a team and a decider. I consider myself in the wilds debt: I see the progress and impact this conservation work and I consider myself an ally to the wild. I consider myself lucky to have ambled & ached across another auspicious and arduous assessment. Submitting to the whims and woes of a community like this was indeed daunting. I was reluctant to pledge my time to living in measure that intimidated my routine and network of accommodations. But I am not isolated out here on the trails; I have a circus of chums that I’d never considered as a true benefit to my hard work. I’m discovering muscles and sinus that I’d never asked, and developing what my voice is in a productive community. There are cold nights, no doubt, full of sound and flurries, signifying an icy awakening, but my curiosity and direction are aglow. So consider these subtle and stressed sounds of our shared labor.
Sounds of melody & malady.
Sounds of folly & friends.
the brutal blurb of a water baby back being shuffled off strained shoulders.
the stiff necked cartilage crackles of distant felled ponderosas buckling at the knees and topping over with dramatic gusto like a gunned down henchman in a grainy old western film. Or, the viral vexation of an impromptu trail song, bellowing with whole-hearted and heinous off key enthusiasm. Or, the march of slumber-eyed crew members schlepping their still snow soaked rain gear over beautifully exposed turf… The sultry hiss of a morning tin pot of boiling creek water and the enticing, caffeinated promise it brings… the dawning cacophony of crepuscular campsite creatures bustling in stereological anticipation of the nights parade… the alarming scrape of a hazel hoe as it unearths a microwave sized granite rock; newly commenced to the surface elements and sworn now to a mountain side oath for another epoch… the muted mumble of oats and raisins in our collective breakfast jowls, masticating with muscle memory and embolden bellies. I’ll not soon forget these sounds that I’ve earned on this crew. I’ve earned the right to know its worth fighting the good fight; and return home with these relics from a conservation family, safe and sound.
While working with NYC this summer I have learned many valuable things, many of which will help me later on in life. One thing I learned that I know will help me in life is teamwork. Being a team is working together and helping each other to accomplish a common goal. I’ve learned not only how to work in teams but individually also. I’ve learned that you’re not necessarily always going to enjoy or want to work with others around you but you have to put your differences apart to get the job done.
Another skill I have acquired is how to properly use different tools. I learned the proper way to stand when using things such as grubbers, what you can cut with loppers and what you’d need a hand saw to cut through, and that you can use a McCloud for raking and cutting. I was also introduced to and learned how to use a t-post puller.
Another thing that I’ve learned that no good ever comes from treating others negatively, even when others are treating you poorly. Instead of stooping to their level, kill them with kindness. I am very thankful for all of the opportunities I have had while working this summer! I have enjoyed working with and getting to know my crew and crew leader.
My brother and I had the pleasure to meet your “Yellow Crew” after they had been re-deployed from Coos Bay to Waldo Lake. They had been blown off the coast by the remnants of Typhoon Pabuk. Everything they had was wet…
We met your crew leaders and their crew while we were camped out at the “Horse Camp” when they pulled in late in the afternoon on Monday September 30, 2013. My first impression of your team leader was a very positive one. She introduced herself and we chatted for a minute or two. Then she asked if it would be OK if they set up their camp close by. That impressed me. So many times people will just set up camp right next to another camp without asking. We helped them pick one of the drier spots to set up their tents. It was a joy to be camped out fairly close to their camp.
My brother has a generator and some spotlights on stands. We set up one of them to give them adequate lighting to be able to set up their campsite. We also invited them to join us around the campfire as we had dry firewood and it had been raining pretty hard for three days. They accepted our invitation to warm up around our campfire. What a joy it was to get to know them! We offered help to them many times but they mostly politely stated that they were OK. They did ask if we knew where they could find drinking water and we were able to give them direction of where there was potable water.
My brothers son had joined Northwest Youth Corps many years ago, so my brother had an idea of what to expect. He had nothing but good things to say about the experiences that his son had had. I had never heard of your organization before but from what I observed, NYC seems to be a great organization. My brother and I are both retired military and were impressed with the leadership that your team leaders and your youth exhibited. Very impressive! You run a tight ship.
All of the youth that I had the opportunity to get to know a little bit are exceptional young adults. It was very refreshing to see their work ethic and their positive attitudes. Thank you for the work that you and your organization does. You and your organization DO make a difference.
Frank E. Hupp
What can I say about Northwest Youth Corps? A lot! It has changed me in so many ways and I have witnessed that change in many others for the better as well. We have learned how to be hard workers and how to better understand each others differences by appreciating where we each come from in life.
Many great skills can be taken away from my experiences in Northwest Youth Corps and many of those skills can be applied to everyday life. I really notice the changes in my life Northwest Youth Corps has made when I get back home and I am sure others here do as well. This program is a hard thing to finish and not everyone can do it, but for the people who do finish it, the hardships are always worth it! There is a lot more than hard work and learning new skills though. Here at NYC we learn about others through laughter and teamwork; sharing stories of our past and stories of what we feel and want our futures to be like.
The feeling of being covered in sweat and dirt at the end of a hard day digging trail is like no other. Everyone on the crew can relate to this feeling and come together through this common experience. It creates one of the best communities you can build. Red crew has treated me well and I thank them for that, this might be my last session at Northwest Youth Corps as a youth for I will soon age out. With what I have been taught and learned here, I soon hope to become a leader myself. I hope to lead youth and teach them what I know of life through my experience at Northwest Youth Corps.
There are many different reasons why one should be participating in a program like Northwest Youth Corps but my one major reason would most definitely be my 6 ½ month year old son, James Taylor. My son is my life and I would do anything for him. I feel that the one thing that he needs right now is a father that can become a man who works hard and gets along with other people. I’ve worked three different jobs from the ages of 16 to 18 and this 5-week session is my favorite because of what I am learning about myself. This is not just a job, it so much more.
It is your decision to be a hard worker; it is up to you to be motivated to have a strong work ethic and it is within your power not to be lazy. My own personal work ethic has always been and will always be, ‘if you are going to do something, do it well and you’d better do it right’. Otherwise what would be the point of doing it at all? I’ve been a hard worker all of my life, but I have struggled sometimes with my relationships with friends, family, and co-workers. Something that I especially need to work on is my relationships with my co-workers.
I feel like I can get along with anybody as long as they are respectful and not lazy. It’s hard for me to like someone who does not put in any effort, it’s the way I was raised. Here at NYC, I am learning how to treat people differently. In your lifetime you will come across people that you do not get along with. That will never change but what you can change is yourself. I am here for my son and to change my attitude towards other people so I can set a good example for him. I’m here to improve my work ethic and make my son proud of me.