27 Ways CAC AmeriCorps Members Served East TN in March

This is by no means an exhaustive list. Our Corps is large and members serve the local community in a wide variety of ways. Take a look at the following list to get a snapshot of just some of the ways members have gotten things done for East Tennessee.

1. Cassie and Rachel (UT Office of Sustainability) worked on planning a sustainability symposium, a variety of service events, and the virtual Environmental Leadership Awards in celebration of Earth Day.

2. Kaitlyn and Alex (Smokies GIS team) geared up for field season and knocked out GIS/data mining orders left and right. They also removed trees that were blocking trails.

3. Madi (Kickstand) strengthened connections in the East Knoxville community in preparation for the opening of her site’s second location in the area.

4. Fiona (Cades Cove) geared up for spring with increased roving and spring-specific education materials for visitors.

5. Abby (Ijams Nature Center) had her hands full with leading homeschool programs and helping with some of Ijams’ youngest guests.

6. Emily (Bridge Refugee Services) worked on planning and marketing World Refugee Day, as well as Partner Appreciation Week to celebrate all sides of her site’s community in April.

7. Abbie (Oak Ridge Stormwater) helped with a stream bank remediation project which included planting 180 individual plants.

8. Ben and Bridget (US Forest Service – Unaka District) spent the month mapping trails and assisting with the removal of hazard trees.

9. Katie (Office of Neighborhoods) supported her site’s first-ever virtual Neighborhood Convention, which was largely a success considering the nature of the changes made for safety.

10. Bryan (Big Brothers Big Sisters of East Tennessee) conducted match support and provided an opportunity for Bigs and Littles to volunteer together during Ijams River Rescue.

11. Karalee, Phil, and Sean (Knox Co. Stormwater) and Kait (Soil Conservation District/Knox Co. Stormwater) distributed over 500 trees as part of TN Tree Day and worked on plans for a virtual Earth Day event.

12. Becca (Centro Hispano) interviewed community members and created content for their Woman’s Fund Campaign, which encourages women to pursue higher education.

13. Riley (Knoxville’s Community Development Organization) helped residents of KCDC housing access vaccines and worked to expand their gardening opportunities.

14. Megan and Rachel (Knoxville Waste & Resource Management) did some digital work, managing the office’s database and contributing to their social media, and started putting plans in place for upcoming educational programming.

15. Madi (UT FUTURE) began to update the mentor portion of her site’s website, which had not been updated for two years, to better provide resources and information for their mentors.

16. Connie and Ashlee (Beardsley Farm) led volunteer efforts at the farm and contributed to online resources, including a new cooking class and a local justice resource page.

17. Chelsea (Knoxville Regional Transportation Planning Organization) continued to add resources to the Greenway StoryMap she has been building.

18. Tiffiany (Centro Hispano) supported the planning of the Latino College and Resource Fair, which will highlight six different institutions and a fund from these institutions that will provide scholarships for Latinx high school seniors.

19. Katharine, Cady, Kristen, and Wyler (Smokies Veg team) treated over 1,000 hemlock trees, received state certifications for pesticide application and participated in prescribed burns.

20. Chris (US Forest Service – Ocoee District) continued to gather trail data to make corrections to GIS maps.

21. Alicia (UT Culinary Institute) searched and applied for grants to help her organization fund their Food 4 All program.

22. Kiera (Knoxville Urban Forestry) worked on the Urban Tree Canopy report, which helps to demonstrate the benefits of tree canopies and shows the relationship between canopy coverage and demographics of an area.

23. Liam (Keep Sevier Beautiful) organized a meeting with local environmental groups to establish better communication and partnership opportunities between the organizations, allowing them to maximize their impacts.

24. Kathryn (Sugarlands Visitor Center) provided education and support for Park visitors.

25. Macey (UT FUTURE) moderated admissions interviews for next year’s prospective students and worked on facilitating a partnership between FUTURE and the UT Hearing and Speech Center for additional student support.

26. Taylor (Sevier Solid Waste) took the lead on her organization’s social media presence and promoted a poster contest for International Compost Awareness Week.

27. Alyssa (University Assisted Community Schools) worked on getting the garden space at Pond Gap Elementary ready for spring and led lessons on seed dispersal and soil composition for students of the school.

AmeriCorps members get things done for our community, and we are excited to see what they accomplish throughout the remainder of their term!

This blog post is a collection of personal reflections and expressions. All opinions represented are those of the author and do not represent the official opinion or views of the Knoxville – Knox County Community Action Committee, CAC AmeriCorps or any other party referenced.