Northwest Youth Corps

Honoring MLK Day across three states

Happy Martin Luther King Jr. Day from all of us at Northwest Youth Corps! While the daily work of Northwest Youth Corps honors the legacy of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. with its focus on service, community, and future generations, this federal holiday (the only one dedicated as a National Day of Service) is a time for people across the country to step up to help build more equitable communities everywhere.  This past week, Northwest Youth Corps staff dedicated time to reflect on the values that Rev. Dr. MLK Jr. championed and took part in community service work around our three office locations in Eugene, Tacoma, and Boise. A huge thanks to all organizers and participants of our MLK day service projects! At our Idaho office, staff members removed old wire caging and reinstalling new wire caging around trees along the Boise Greenbelt in partnership with Boise Parks and Rec. Once trees have died, uprooted, or outgrown their cages, the wire needs to be removed before it becomes a hazard or pollutant to the Boise River. Properly-fitted cages protect healthy trees from beaver damage, ensuring that important riparian habitat has the shade, soil stabilization, and productive plant life that …

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Youth crews help protect homes from wildfire thanks to state-funded training

Originally from: Sami Edge | The Oregonian/OregonLive Lindsay Nava hauled branches up a long wooded driveway near Grants Pass under the burning midday sun on Tuesday. Her blonde hair, tucked into braids and bound back with a bandana, poked out from underneath her orange hard hat while she felled trees and limbs, building a pile to turn into wood chips. Nava, 22, is on a five-person team of young people working to clear fire hazards from around homes and buildings in Southern Oregon, through a new effort funded by the Legislature in 2021 as part of a sweeping $195 million package to boost Oregon’s wildfire preparedness. The Oregon Conservation Corps program allows young people to develop the skills to become wildland firefighters and land managers while helping vulnerable communities mitigate fire risks. The Higher Education Coordinating Commission, which distributes the funds, expects nearly 400 corps members ages 16 to 26 to work on crews overseen by tribes, schools and nonprofits around the state. Crew members on Nava’s Northwest Youth Corps crew receive a $4,235 stipend and $1,678 for school costs during their 10-week assignments, during which they camp near their worksites. The crews learn to use chainsaws and power tools and take courses that …

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Project Spotlight

In partnership with Oregon  Bureau of Land Management , our fall young adult crews have been working at Twin Prairie Meadows (near cottage grove, OR ) removing conifers to allow for the madrones and oak trees to thrive. These meadows offer essential habitat for plants and animals amongst the otherwise thick tree canopies of the area. The project provided an excellent opportunity for the crew to practice bucking logs into decomposition piles, after getting their saw certifications the week prior. While working on a steep incline made for an intense and physically demanding project, it offered the crew epic views that they will not soon forget.