Our summer was a busy one and I'm sure you feel the same. Here we are, halfway through October, and I wanted to share with you some stories from our experiences these last few months.
Plumas Conservation, Restoration and Education in Watersheds (P-CREW) is a youth conservation corps that provides 10, 11 and 12 graders a summer job. But it is so much more than that.
Every summer, we put teams together comprised of both rural and urban teenagers with vastly different experiences of the world.
We send them into the woods to work hard, camp, learn and explore—and many times, they come back changed in profound ways.
Rather than try to say more, I am going to let their own words give you a glimpse into the P-CREW experience. You might want to grab a tissue; I certainly needed one.
Director of Development
A Parent's Perspective:
My daughter has grown tremendously as a result of working with you and P-CREW staff and other teens. She gained confidence in herself that she has never had before and she is not shying away from challenges as she previously had done.
Her attitude towards the hard work of her senior year is much more positive than last year. She says that P-CREW taught her that waking up early and getting started on tasks makes her more productive. She was amazed at how much she accomplished in one day on P-CREW, so she is applying that to her school work and personal goals. I am so proud of her and grateful for the growth she gained from her summer experience.
I underestimated the mental growth I would experience being a part of P-CREW. I have gained so much more perspective on myself, other people, and the world around me. I initially thought it would be just an exciting job but the whole experience has inspired me and made me happier than I’ve been in years.
Nell, 12th grade
One of the toughest and most painful experiences I’ve had during P-CREW was our hike up Harkness. We went four miles uphill! I continually doubted myself and told myself I wasn’t gonna make it up that mountain. But lo and behold, I freaking made it! It was totally rad to be able to stand on top of that mountain I had just conquered! It was a slightly cathartic experience because after I had hiked back down the mountain, I felt incredible!”
Cady, 10th grade
A Crew Leader's Perspective:
There were often days where I found myself talking with a crew member about the length of P-CREW, and how just saying it’s five weeks really doesn’t mean anything. It really doesn’t give you an idea of the duration. P-CREW is, simultaneously, an eternity and a brief moment. While you’re in it, slogging through another 90 degree day with little shade swinging a pick; tool-up seems like a distant dream. To say nothing of graduation and going back home. And yet when that day does arrive and we all stood around the vehicles being loaded up with bags and people who had become family it seemed that just about everyone looked back and had the thought “It feels like I just got here.”
During that two and a half months I worked, I learned, I cried, I laughed, and I grew. That’s more than enough about me, though, I would much rather talk about why this experience was what it was for all involved. The crews. I am so proud of you all. The way that you all made such conscious and meaningful choices on how to spend your summer, growing personally and giving back to the earth around you. You stood by one another during tough times, you worked side by side under the hot sun, you encouraged others up when they were struggling; you became a family. There’s a lot of hard news out there in the world, and working in conservation can be discouraging at times. But seeing you all gives me so much hope and happiness. Please keep developing the skills you learned and the strengths you realized. Remember the strength you have in your voice and your actions, stand strong for who you are and what you believe in. Always be kind. This world needs people like you.
Worries about Wildfire lead to Joint Project
The Sierra Institute is excited to announce the initiation of the West Shore Community Wildfire Protection Project (West Shore Project) in collaboration with the U.S. Forest Service (USFS).
The purpose of the project is to plan and implement vegetation management activities within the wildland-urban interface (WUI) to: improve resiliency to wildfire; reduce levels of tree mortality resulting from stressors such as insect infestation, and disease; and improve overall forest and watershed health. Additionally, this project seeks to enhance the recreation experience through facilities improvements and access management.
To learn more, visit the project page.
EDUCATION AND OUTREACH
With the Lake Almanor Area Chamber of Commerce, we organized The Woodlands and Watersheds Discovery Weekend designed to educate and inspire both residents and visitors about the extraordinary beauty and ecological importance of our region. The ecotourism event series included tours, mixers and talks.
Plumas Pines Resort generously donated their lawn for the Trees, Trout and Stout fundraiser. With delicious brews by local craft brewer, Waganupa, it was a spectacular setting for watching the fireworks.
Did you know?
Ecosystem services are the direct and indirect contributions of ecosystems to human well-being. They support directly or indirectly our survival and quality of life.
Provisioning Services include food, fresh water, wood, fiber, medicines.
While the Feather river region may seem far away to some, clean air and water start here for many Californians .
Sierra waterways provide more than
California’s developed water supply for:
Bringing the Fun Back
We will be hosting the revitalized event on August 22, 2020
Many of our staff have fond memories of this event. It used to be organized by Bill Rockett, owner of Blackhawk Solar, and took place every July on the weekend after High Sierra Music Festival.
With the help of Bill, we are working to bring this event back. Part fundraiser for our non-profit, part investment in the economy of Taylorsville and Indian Valley, but really, all about great music, food and hangtime with friends.
If you are interested in participating, volunteering, helping to plan or just want to be kept in the loop, please SIGN UP HERE.