On Martin Luther King Jr. Day, TxCC set out to participate in a national day of service. Splitting up to attend to different sites in the Austin community, our van headed down to the Onion Creek area where the Halloween Floods rose up and damaged so many homes in 2013. Along with our YouthBuild friends from American YouthWorks, we were there to mulch and clear out brush from an area purchased by the city to provide green space to the people of Austin. While our work wouldn’t replace the homes lost during the floods, helping to turn the space into something positive for the community felt fitting on a day spent remembering and honoring the work of Dr. Martin Luther King. And after a long week of orientation, I think we were ready to get to work in the Texas sun. Fresh mulch was set out for the trees and a hefty wood stack organized by the curb. The work also gave us a chance to get to know the YouthBuild members better, which inevitably led to the first annual MLK Day Wheelbarrow Race ®. Naturally, TxCC proved victorious with a surge powered by the official Texas Conservation Corp fight song played by Grammy-award winning artist, Willie Nelson, but both teams lined up for the traditional handshake to celebrate the tight race and good work done throughout the day. The day ended with a viewing of the movie, Selma, and a discussion, capping off a day of work with reflection and appreciation for those that laid the foundation for the work we completed and hope to do throughout the term of our service.
Benjamin Schell, Crew Member