MHYC Hosts Special Guests
On August 1, Colorado Day, the Land Conservation crew had the opportunity to host Governor Jared Polis and Lt. Governor Dianna Primavera at an El Paso County service site. The visit was an opportunity to highlight the impact of Colorado Climate Corps in action, in which MHYC has a number of enrolled Corpsmembers. The Colorado Climate Corps is an AmeriCorps program where young adults provide critical capacity and support to local governments to develop and execute climate action plans and projects, implement wildfire and flood mitigation projects and conduct water and energy efficiency projects.
The Colorado Day visit provided MHYC Corpsmember, Philip P. with the chance to highlight the work of the Corps as a stepping to take on a career in forestry or botany.
“You know you’ll learn things that you never thought you’d be doing. You’ll grow in so many ways, personally, professionally, and interpersonally, and you’ll get to have a lot of fun doing unique things out here that no one else get to do.” Phil P., Land Conservation Corpsmember
Phillip began his journey at MHYC-Southern Front Range as a Land Conservation Leader in 2021, leading both trail and saw crews. He returned in 2022 as a Senior Crew Leader, furthering his technical skills and providing the opportunity to help train this year’s cohort of crew leaders. Peers have noted that Phillip excels at inclusivity, empowerment, and mentorship. He fundamentally understands MHYC’s goals and is passionate about youth development.
Much of the program’s success in 2022 can be attributed to Phillip’s versatility and willingness to support every crew. He volunteered to join crews in the field when they were short-staffed. Phil assisted in trail trainings and was an evaluator for the S-212 Wildland Fire Chain Saws training. Over time, he built skills to manage conflict within and between crews while applying a growth mindset to each challenge. Phillip is invested in the work of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) and created thoughtful Land Acknowledgements with associated discussion questions for every unique project location. He continues to find ways to improve the functionality of the MHYC warehouse, improve trainings, and involve the greater Pikes Peak community in the program.
Energy and Water Conservation
Maddie joined Mile High Youth Corps’ Energy and Water Conservation program in May 2022. She recently moved to Denver after completing a degree in Environmental Studies from the University of Vermont. Before MHYC, Maddie had worked with middle school aged students around environmental education and knew she wanted to apply education in her next role. She saw the Climate Action Corpsmember role and knew this would aligned with her interests so she applied.
As a Climate Action Corpsmember, Maddie helped support energy and water saving measures in income-qualifying homes across the metro area. On average, household save $192 by simple measures in their homes, including sink and shower aerators, ultra-high efficiency toilets installaed and changing to LED lightbulbs. Maddie was able to apply her experience as an educator with clients in their homes.
“Some houses were encouraged to adopt simple conservation measures when they understood the financial benefits to their annual utility bills.” Maddie, Energy & Water Conservation Program