Install water-efficient shower heads and low-flow faucet aerators to reduce water consumption without any loss in pressure.
Archive for April, 2012
Renee Werthwein is the new administrative assistant at MHYC – Colorado Springs and will likely be the new voice you’ll hear when you call. Her 12-week position will be paid through the Pikes Peak Workforce Center, so we’re sending a big ol’ “thank you” to them. Renee is originally from New Jersey, but moved to Colorado for a fresh start in May 2011, after visiting family out here the previous December. Her favorite things about Colorado so far are “the weather and the beautiful mountains.” She also enjoys being near family members who have also made Colorado their home. “Best move I’ve ever made!” she exclaimed with a smile. Renee has been extremely helpful during this heavy recruitment time by answering many phone calls, performing application pre-screens, and keeping all documentation very well organized. We’re very grateful for her!
Bundle up your water heater in an insulating blanket.
Water Heater Blankets start around $10-15 but can save you BIG on your utility bills.
Posted in ACLC, Corpsmember Spotlight, Energy Conservation, Leadership Council, Water Conservation, YouthBuild, tagged ACLC, Energy Conservation, Leadership Council, Water Conservation, YouthBuild on April 19, 2012 | Leave a Comment »
At the beginning of each term, we give Corpsmembers the opportunity to nominate and elect their peers to MHYC’s Leadership Council. This is a group made up entirely of Corpsmembers to act as a liaison between staff members and the crews. Leadership Council works to implement policy changes, host and coordinate events like Career Day and our Halloween party “Boo-Yah,” and relay information between Corpsmembers and staff.
In January, three crews began their terms at the same time and when we mentioned the opportunity to take a leadership role in the organization, many Corpsmembers jumped at the chance. The prospective council members were asked to prepare a letter of intent, a letter of recommendation, and also a short speech which they would deliver at the monthly Community Meeting. Corpsmembers on each crew voted for who they wanted to represent them.
Below is a video compilation of the winning representatives’ speeches:
The newest Leadership Council members have been hard at work with the rest of the team since March and we are incredibly excited to have them on board. Joining us from the ACLC crew are Gabe, Casey, and Emily, from the Energy crew we have Jack and Jackie, and our new representative from the Water crew is Brandon. They will be joining the representatives from YouthBuild and the Leadership Council Advisors in working to “Build individual Corpsmember strengths to ensure Corps success.”
Best of luck to our newest representatives!
Mile High Youth Corps is beginning a new series on our blog devoted to featuring our alumni. Today, we invite you to learn about David Cumming, an alumni from our 2011 ACLC program. We asked David a few questions about his ACLC term and life after AmeriCorps. Here is what he had to share:
MHYC: Tell us a little bit about yourself. What were you doing before MHYC and how did you end up in Denver serving as an ACLC?
David: Well, so I came about this state by way of shear interest of the west. Originally from Virginia, and raised in Florida, I came out here to educate kids in the outdoors, and decided to put in my time with the government for a short stint in Denver because I wanted to find an outlet in Denver, as well as work some trails that I so often use on my weekends along the Front Range.
MHYC: What is your favorite MHYC memory?
David: So the summer work as an ACLC was definitely a highlight. We worked with some great project sponsors and a lot of very interesting environmental education topics. We worked on invasive species and a bit of chainsaw work at the Rocky Mountain Arsenal. After a long day’s work in the hot sun, we took a break to go and see where they keep a warehouse full of blacklisted and confiscated illegal animal hides, jackets, rattlesnake shoes, zebra heads, turtles … I mean, things got pretty crazy in there. Some of the corps members were pretty upset. I thought it was pretty terrible as well. But I kind of wanted some cobra skin cowboy boots … not gonna lie.
MHYC: What are you up to now? What do you love about it?
David: Right now I work about two hours southwest of Denver in a little ranching/lumber town called Florissant. About five miles on a dirt road, you’ll find our 6,000 acre property where we host a number of different operations. The umbrella group is called the Colorado Outdoor Education Center. We have an outdoor education school that brings in students from middle schools all around the Front Range in the spring and fall for a number of weeks. We also have a summer camp that I am the program director of, called Sanborn Western Camps. It’s an adventure-based camp, full of 14er trips, rock climbing on and off property, an enormous horseback riding program (we keep around 110 of ‘em over the summer) and all types of other excursions with kids from all around the world.
MHYC: What advice would you have for current Corpsmembers about their time at MHYC or their future goals?
David: Okay, so I reckon I’d advise the current ACLC Corpsmembers to really dig deep with your capstone projects. As some of the projects over the ten months may get tedious, the project is there for you so you can personalize it with your interests and strengths. It’s a time to be creative and connect with the community. Go forth.
MHYC: Any thoughts on adjusting to the “real world” after AmeriCorps?
David: I guess it doesn’t get much more “real” than what you’ll experience in AmeriCorps. This particular program (energy, water and ACLC) has access to some of Denver’s most underprivileged populations (I also consider it as a microcosm of the US, as well), whose income levels are ubiquitous in our current economy. And unfortunately, it doesn’t get much better for them. I was incredibly fortunate enough to find a job that I love and a group of people here at the ranch that I am blessed to be around, every day.
But here’s the thing. If you are so lucky to breath good, clean air, if you can get phone calls every night from our parents who worry about us out here, oh so dearly, or if you have an iPhone with various applications to tell you what the weather is going to be that day, or if you eat three full healthy meals a day, well, then I’d say that your life is pretty “unreal,” honestly. We so often take these things as just part of our carefree, normal day. But it’s not. The people you meet while in your program struggle to buy two of the three meals a day. People that really, truly struggle. And you’ll learn this. And if you don’t, I’m sorry. I’m sorry that you don’t also realize that these “real” people are also some of the most sacred members of our society. They’ll tell you stories of war, stories of love and loss in just twenty quick minutes of their day. And the funny thing is, you, right there in their doorway, may have been one of five people that have visited them over the course of this year. As heart-wrenching as the “reality,” conversely, it’s incredibly uplifting, and so, so very unique, indeed—that you, as a young twenty-something who will grow old just as the men and women you will meet have, can realize these people are happy, truly happy for what they are given.
MHYC: Anything else that we should know about you?
David: As an AmeriCorps alum, I feel good about the values, more so, than anything else. How to do good, hard work. How to try and understand cultures that are vastly different than my granola hippie way of living. How to be a better friend and brother. How to stay in touch, despite the distance between the people I care the most about. How to do such a small task—cutting a single tree to allow the forest to breathe easy, or screwing in a light bulb—and feel good about the bigger picture at the end of the day, despite the incredibly dense sprawl of Denver. How we are all part of something bigger than ourselves, and the sooner we realize that, the sooner we can begin to find validity in every single thing we do in this life.
MHYC: Thanks, David!
David: Ciao, and be good to yourselves.
Want to stay connected to MHYC Alums? Join us for our first official networking event on Thursday, April 19 from 5:30-7pm at Studio 12 Gallery (209 Kalamath St. in Denver). This event is free; an RSVP to caitlynh [at] mhyc [dot] net is requested but not required.
Unplug seldom-used appliances and only plug them in when you need to use them.
Posted in ACLC, Corpsmember Spotlight, Energy Conservation, Water Conservation, YouthBuild, tagged ACLC, Denver, Energy Conservation, Mile High Youth Corps, Water Conservation, YouthBuild on April 12, 2012 | Leave a Comment »
Every month at our Community Meeting, we recognize one Corpsmember from each crew as Corpsmember of the Month. The winners of this award are chosen by their own crews as someone who has exhibited hard work and dedication, promoted a positive Corps culture and has gone above and beyond during the last month. By giving this award at our Community Meetings, Crew Leaders have the opportunity to share with everyone at MHYC the outstanding work of our winners.
We are very proud to show off our Corpsmembers of the Month for April!
From left to right: Vincent (YouthBuild), Devon (YouthBuild), Cristal (ACLC), Ashley (Energy), and Eddie (Water).
Congratulations to you all! You’ve done a great job, not only last month, but during all of your term. Thanks for all of your hard work!
Each month we will be recognizing a new group of Corpsmembers so be sure to check back!
Posted in Infographic of the Month, Uncategorized, tagged Denver, employment opportunities, infographic, life after mile high youth corps, MHYC, Mile High Youth Corps, young adults, Youth Unemployment on April 4, 2012 | Leave a Comment »
Monthly Infographic #1 – Life After Mile High Youth Corps (MHYC)
At MHYC, our focus is on providing quality jobs for youth, which means that we provide training in soft and hard skills to ensure that youth who complete our programs are able to transition into employment or educational opportunities outside the Corps. This infographic, based on our 2011 numbers, displays the various tracks that our youth take once they complete a term of service with Mile High Youth Corps.
Look for more infographics next month as we continue this series on MHYC by the Numbers.
You probably know that MHYC helps Denver-area residents reduce their energy consumption, but did you know that we work with local businesses, too? Our new(ish) GreenFAX program is a collaborative sustainability outreach effort led by the four business districts and associations along Colfax Avenue in partnership with the City and County of Denver’s Denver Energy Challenge.
MHYC GreenFAX crews are helping small businesses and property owners along Colfax Avenue identify opportunities for energy and cost savings through the following FREE services:
- Xcel Energy Lighting Audit – Taking a count of all the lighting fixtures that qualify for rebates and free replacements through Xcel Energy
- Denver Water Audit – Auditing toilets to see if they qualify for a free high efficiency replacement through Denver Water.
- Outreach Support – Canvassing with materials promoting the Denver Energy Challenge’s GreenFAX Program.
- Energy Efficiency Upgrades – Installing programmable thermostats, high-efficiency lighting, LED exit signs, weather-stripping, door sweeps, faucet aerators, and kitchen spray valves
And, we’re making a difference. Businesses are seeing dramatic reductions in their energy costs through these efforts. As Mr. Feivel Gallard of Congregation Zera Abraham explains,
Our usage of lighting has gone down 25 percent after changing the light bulbs in the synagogue. It’s a very generous energy program that the city provides. We couldn’t afford to do it without all the savings from the rebates. You often hear about government programs being wasteful, but this was all benefit and no waste.”
So, next time you are on Colfax at the Fillmore Auditorium, Hollywood’s Barber Shop, Pinche Taco Bar, Brilliant Blooms, or any of the dozens of businesses our GreenFAX crews have serviced, take a look around. You’ll know a business took part in the Denver Energy Challenge anywhere you see a window decal with the program’s logo. The changes may be subtle, but the impact is tremendous.
For more information on the Denver Energy Challenge, visit www.denverenergy.org.
Keep your refrigerator and freezer full of food.
A full fridge doesn’t have to work as hard to stay cool when you open the door for that midnight snack