Challenge Accepted: Interns Climb at Castle Rock State Park

Screen Shot 2018-10-17 at 1.00.17 PM

This past weekend a team of ten interns headed to Castle Rock State Park to rock climb for the very first time. Outward Bound led the day, coaching participants on the different rock climbing gear, how to properly belay, and a lot more.

Each of our students climbed the rock multiple times, and everyone was able to reach higher than there the first attempt. It was an incredibly supportive, encouraging environment, and the group flourished with the new challenge.

Screen Shot 2018-10-17 at 1.00.24 PM

After rock climbing for a full day, the group headed to Portola Redwoods State Park where they learned or practiced how to set up a tent, supported with meal prep and cooking, and enjoyed free time and bonfire games.

Screen Shot 2018-10-17 at 1.01.01 PM

The trip came to an end on Sunday afternoon at TipToe Waterfall. Students participated in reflection activities and were able to share out their best moments of the trip and their appreciation for one another.

It was unanimous that this trip was surely unforgettable. The group went through a lot of challenges together and grew closer from it all. Check out what some of our rock climbers had to say about their weekend experience!

“I’m really glad that I was able to go on such a fun adventure with amazing people. I had so many mixed emotions there, but I don’t regret anything. Meeting the people, trying new things, and being more independent and dependent on others made me realize a lot of things. This trip is something I’ll never forget.” – Joey Ow, Pinole High Earth Team Intern

“The weekend trip made my love for nature to grow and I really appreciate what nature gave us. The trip also made me break out of my comfort zone by having me make new friends and do things that I have never done, such as camping and rock climbing. I really appreciate everyone who made me feel comfortable and happy.” – Sabrina Lozano, Antioch High Earth Team

“It was an out of comfort experience to take a risk and complete challenges you didn’t think you could face.” – David Tran, Pinole High Earth Team Intern

“The rock climbing trip was rad! It gave our team the opportunity to shine outside of our comfort zone. The view at the top was nothing like I have seen. I felt so accomplished when I reached it. Being able to do trips like these with Earth Team helps us explore what is out there for us. The trip was great, but doing it with so many positive and uplifting people made it unforgettable.” – Jeremy Francisco, Pinole High Earth Team Intern

“I had so much fun I am going to be real I was actually debating because I normally never get out of my comfort zone, so it was a big deal but other than that the group and everyone I met were kind and supportive and made me feel like I belong in Earth team” -Allison Lopez, Richmond High Earth Team Intern

Screen Shot 2018-10-17 at 1.01.59 PM

Outdoor Explorers Program

Advertisements

Announcing the Upcoming Outdoor Explorers Program Trip: Kayaking at Tomales Bay!

Screen Shot 2018-10-12 at 9.20.05 AM.png

Earth Team is excited to announce its upcoming Outdoor Explorers Trip, Kayaking in the beautiful Tomales Bay! Next weekend, fourteen youth will experience their first time being out on the sea in a kayak.

Earth Team will be partnering with Environmental Traveling Companions for a full day ocean seeing experience. Participants will have the opportunity to learn about the area, its wildlife, and a whole lot more.

This trip will offer opportunities for students to work as a team, and push through potential uncertainty that comes with an entirely new environment. It will also be an excellent opportunity for participants to practice being aware of their surroundings and learn about the powerful ocean and how to be safe when enjoying what it has to offer.

We can’t wait to get going!

Outdoor Explorers Program

Announcing the Upcoming Outdoor Explorer Trip: Rock Climbing at Castle Rock State Park!

Screen Shot 2018-10-09 at 5.43.07 PM

Earth Team is excited to announce its upcoming Outdoor Explorers Trip, Rock Climbing and Camping! This weekend, twelve youth will go rock climbing outdoors for the first time! Also, many of these students will experience their first time camping.

Earth Team will be partnering with Outward Bound for a full day rock climbing experience at the well-known spot called Goat Rock, located in Castle Rock State Park.

This trip will offer numerous opportunities for students to challenge themselves, including overcoming a fear of heights, trusting climbing equipment, relying on one another for support, and more. It will also be an excellent opportunity for participants to practice being aware of their surroundings and understand the importance of safe practices in an outdoor setting.

Participants will be camping at Portola Redwoods State Park. There they will get to learn or practice how to set up a tent, participate in meal prep, and gather around the bonfire for story sharing and group activities.

We cannot wait to start exploring!

Outdoor Explorers Program

Mountain Biking at Rush Creek Trail for the Fall Equinox!

Screen Shot 2018-10-09 at 5.19.43 PM

On Saturday, September 22nd, eleven Earth Team interns hopped in the van to be a part of the first outdoor explorers trip of the year, Mountain Biking at Rush Creek Trail!

Participants were led by Trips for Kids Marin, whose mission is to provide transformative cycling experiences that promote healthy, recreational lifestyles, environmental awareness, and personal empowerment for young people.

Screen Shot 2018-10-09 at 5.18.31 PM

The youth were loaded up with proper gear and safety equipment. Participants learned how to fit a helmet properly, why gloves are essential, and more. Before heading to the trail, the team grouped to discuss prior biking experience and share with the team what they were most looking to get out of the day. Many students reflected that they were excited to be outside, especially outside of their city!

A vast majority of the student group was mountain biking for the very first time, with a couple of repeaters having some familiarity with it after participating in last year’s mountain biking trip. These repeaters did a great job encouraging the rest of the group and promoting a positive atmosphere throughout the day.

Screen Shot 2018-10-09 at 5.18.49 PM

Trips for Kids led an in-depth bike introduction and safety talk overviewing the different parts of the student’s bikes and how to utilize the different bike mechanisms. There were multiple volunteer guides, so each participant had the opportunity to be supported one on one throughout the day. After a few practice rounds of getting used to the bells and whistles, the group was off.

Participants biked many miles throughout the day. They were very quick to learn and did a great job at following directions, so Trips for Kids staff let them take on the challenge of a single track route! The group was zooming around corners and charging up mountains, and individuals reflected that although they had a fear of falling, the thrill of going fast made it all worth it.

Screen Shot 2018-10-09 at 5.19.53 PM

About halfway through the day, the group stopped in a shaded spot with a beautiful view for a trail lunch. Shortly after, the group participated in an activity to celebrate the Fall Equinox and themselves. The group discussed what the fall equinox is and how different people and cultures all over the world celebrate it. Some of the most common underlying similarities are the celebration of harvest and internal balance. After learning more about the special day, each student explored deeper into the forest to find a spot that called to them. Each intern was asked to take a 360-degree view of their surroundings and use all their senses to take in their spot. Individuals were encouraged first to find their balance and peace, then close their eyes and think of three things they are grateful for. The idea was that they were harvesting their gratitude within themselves by bringing it to the surface.

screen-shot-2018-10-09-at-5-20-14-pm-e1539130992597.png

After spending some alone time in nature, the group reconvened in a big loving circle where they each shared one of the things they were grateful for. After each person spoke, the group cheered with their drinks of water to make sure everyone was staying hydrated and to celebrate what each had to share.

After the activity, the group tucked their gratefulness deep into their pockets to carry with them for the rest of the ride. Participants took off at their own pace, riding the rest of the trail until arriving at the trailhead where they were cheered on by fellow teammates.

The group reflected on the experience and shared a token of appreciation. Many students expressed gratitude for getting to be outdoors, trying something new, having a supportive group, and a lot more.

Special thank you to Trips for Kids Marin for making this day possible!

Screen Shot 2018-10-09 at 5.19.28 PM Outdoor Explorers Program 

Introducing Earth Team’s 2018-2019 Outdoor Explorers Program!

Screen Shot 2018-10-09 at 5.06.10 PM.png

Earth Team has officially kicked off its 2018-2019 Outdoor Explorers Program! The Outdoor Explorers Program will offer to 100+ of our youth the opportunity to go deep into nature and get immersive experiences rock climbing, white-water rafting, mountain biking, sea kayaking, cave exploring and more.

This program takes a comprehensive approach to improve students’ sense of personal identity, self-agency, and confidence by building on the inherent potential and strengths of our interns.

The goal is to encourage interns to build long-term health, resilience, and leadership through immersion into in-depth experiences in nature. Our outdoor activities range from single day trips to overnighters to extended multi-day trips. These outdoor activities will bring together students from different schools and will be a fantastic opportunity for students to try new things, build new skills and create meaningful relationships with their fellow interns, their Earth Team coaches, and with the world they work so hard to protect.

When participating in this program, participants will be encouraged to step outside of their comfort zone. This could mean jumping into a flowing river or having personal conversations with others. We hope individuals can overcome challenges both small and large, and gain confidence and insight throughout those experiences. 

We are truly grateful to have the support from through NorthFace’s Explore Fund and Coastal Conservancy’s Grant Program. Through these monthly trips, we expect to lower access-to-nature barriers for underserved youth, increase interest in stewardship of the land, and expand the narrative of outdoor exploration.

Outdoor Explorers Program 

A Job Well Done! Alhambra High Interns Close out a Great Year!

IMG_8321

The year has come to an end! This year Alhambra met 40 times, completing over 100 hours of education and training, including 23 class visits, 10 field visits, 6 public event, and 1 recruitment event! Together, we reached over 350 community members and over 1,360 peers and faculty on campus!

The highlights of our project were..

Earth Day Community Clean Up – Interns hosted a community clean up event where over 7,500 pieces of litter were collected off the streets of Rumrill Blvd.

Rumrill Litter Reduction – Interns remove over 15,000 pieces of litter from Rumrill HotSpots!

Community Input Session – Interns host a listening session to hear from the community on what solutions they have towards reduction of litter on Rumrill.

On Campus Scavenger Hunt – Interns engaged their peers in an after-school hands on experience, cleaning up their campus and scavenging for litter to receive prices!

San Pablo City Council Presentation – Interns present their years work to San Pablo City Council and do an incredible job!

Supporting other Schools Projects – Throughout the year, Alhambra interns supported multiple events including the Litter March, Community Tree Planting and more!

“From this experience I learned that you should never procrastinate, and we as a whole, did not. I also learned that public speaking is very difficult and scary. Lastly, I learned that you should not procrastinate on preparation and studying.”

“Overall I had one major challenge, preparation. I am an on the spot and wing-it type of person but this project involved lots of preparation and planning. During this project I needed to overcome this part of me, I needed my team for that part. They taught me that winging it is good occasionally, but readiness is always better. My team taught me great skills that I will always remember in the future.”

“My overall favorite part of the day was near the end. My favorite part was the communities input and cooperation during this event. I loved when we all got back from making a difference in the community and then we all talked. The community gave us their opinions and we are using them to make a difference. My favorite part of Earth Day was the sharing of ideas and the connecting that we did as a whole community. I also enjoyed working with my team to create that event, to bring the community together, and connect as a whole.”

Great job Alhambra interns!

LEADERSHIP | STEWARDSHIP | SERVICE

Alhambra High Closes the Year Strong

IMG_8321

Last Thursday, Alhambra High Earth Team closed the year stronger then ever.  This team has been faced with many challenges this semester and has over came all of them.  They are the smallest earth team within the program, yet one of the strongest.  An all female team, each young lady has had to step up to the plate taking on more responsibility to account for the smaller team, and each one of them succeeded with flying colors.  The team continued to engage the San Pablo community raising awareness about the many effects of litter on our bay, reaching over 1,600 peers in the community and their own campus in the second semester alone.  In addition to the increase in awareness and education, the team was able to prevent nearly 17,000 pieces of litter from entering the local watersheds and harming our Bay habitats and wildlife.  All interns have developed tremendously as professionals and can speak about their project to the public with ease and grace.

In celebration of all of their hard work, the interns were awarded certificates of achievement by their program coordinator, Jordan DeSilva, and Earth Team board president, Michele Korpos.  Seniors were decorated with green Earth Team cords to wear during graduation, and the team spent the afternoon enjoying the near by Martinez Marina and reflecting on their many great experiences throughout the semester.  There is no doubt that these humans will continue to enact change in the communities that they thrive in.

LEADERSHIP | STEWARDSHIP | SERVICE

Interns Present to the San Pablo City Council

32687043_10212468514884992_3437746868019265536_n

With the year coming to an end, our Alhambra High interns were eager to present their accomplishments to the San Pablo City Council.  Joined by three other teams that were focusing their efforts in the San Pablo/Richmond area, our interns were able to paint a story of the outcomes all their hard work produced.  Shradha Shakya, a junior at Alhambra High, spoke to the council about the goals the team had set for the semester and their allignment with the City’s Complete Green Streets Project. Arianna Aguilera, a senior at Alhambra High, followed speaking to the council about the many methods the team used to engage the community in their efforts to reduce waste and continued to use data to prove to the council how effective community engagement can be in reducing litter.  Dhzyia Miller-Ford, a senior as well, closed the presentation by speaking on the many methods the team has developed to reduce waste both in the Rumrill Blvd. community and on their own campus and the challenges the team overcame when planning for each event.

20180507_183750

After the presentation it was clear the interns were feeling energized and proud.  Each council member made an effort to thank the students for their hard work and dedication.  It is through experiences like these that our students draw their inspiration, and the communities we work in realize the power of the youth.

Over 7,000 Pieces of Litter Removed During Rumrill Community Clean Up

31206641_10212321533730555_1802324498247057408_n.jpg

Earth Day weekend was a successful one for Earth Team interns across the East Bay. Youth from Richmond, Martinez, and Oakland came together joined by many members of the Rumrill community, to reduce litter in the area, that is known to be harming wildlife, polluting water resources, and destroying habitat.

Alhambra High interns led the event flawlessly, giving speeches to the crowd about the work they have been doing to reduce litter and guiding nearly 100 participants through a litter clean up.  Elizabeth White, a representative of CA EPA, joined the interns to speak to the crowd about the ways they can make a change and future opportunities in the STEM field for upcoming professionals.  Amanda Booth, Environmental Program Analyst for the City of San Pablo, came out to support the event and help lead participants safely through the clean up.  In just one hour, the group of 92 collected 7,190 pieces of litter.  Prizes were given to the group that collected the most litter and LPS Richmond Band played a delightful set to round off the celebration.

Alhambra High interns spent weeks preparing for the day, and can proudly say they have planned and executed a community event.  Event space was donated by Mac Arthur Community Baptist Church, and long time advocate for the Rumrill community, and generous donations were given by Murphy Flooring, Subway, Trader Joe’s, Pizza My Heart, and Patagonia.  With out these donations and the support of the community this event would not have been what it was.

Here is a reflection from Rebecca Jochum about the day:

“From this experience I learned that you should never procrastinate, and we as a whole, did not. I also learned that public speaking is very difficult and scary. Lastly, I learned that you should not procrastinate on preparation and studying.

Overall I had one major challenge, preparation. I am an on the spot and wing-it type of person but this project involved lots of preparation and planning. During this project I needed to overcome this part of me, I needed my team for that part. They taught me that winging it is good occasionally, but readiness is always better. My team taught me great skills that I will always remember in the future.

My overall favorite part of the day was near the end. My favorite part was the communities input and cooperation during this event. I loved when we all got back from making a difference in the community and then we all talked. The community gave us their opinions and we are using them to make a difference. My favorite part of Earth Day was the sharing of ideas and the connecting that we did as a whole community. I also enjoyed working with my team to create that event, to bring the community together, and connect as a whole.”

LEADERSHIP | STEWARDSHIP | SERVICE