Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Round One Summary: The Presidio Trust

My and Blue One's time in San Francisco working at the Presidio came to a close on December 16th. The Presidio, a former military base located in the San Francisco bay area, has been apart of the National Park Services as part of the Golden Gate National Recreational Area since October of 1994. The Presidio’s funding is unique to other national parks in that its federal appropriations diminish each year with appropriations ending completely after the fiscal year of 2012. In 1996 Congress created the Presidio Trust with the mission to preserve the Presidio and make it financially self-sufficient.

We had variety of projects during our time in SF amongst the numerous departments of the Trust. In addition to the community garden I mentioned in an earlier post we also bury a new irrigation line with the forestry crew, Built 17 Green house benches, renovated garden beds in one of the many neighborhoods in the park, helped operate the Dragonfly Creek volunteer event, and weeded more non-native species than you can imagine. Working with the Presidio has provided us with some very unique ISP (Independent Service Project) opportunities, like working on the famous Alcatraz, and resorting the natural beauty of Redwood Creek at Muir Beach with the Golden Gate Park National Conservancy. Seeing the need for more community involvement at Muir Beach Blue One put together their first community day for the new volunteer opportunity.

It wasn't all work and no play for the team though; We had taken full advantage of any downtime, exploring the various parts of the city like The Castro, Height Street, The Mission, Fisherman’s Warf and other famous San Francisco locations. Some of us even met music icons They Might Be Giants and Brian Wilson. It was also a great round for me personally because during the project I got to go to a comic book store signing by the creative team of one of my current favorite comics Batwoman. It was great getting to meet J. H. Williams III and W. Haden Blackman, they gave me very helpful advise in pursuing a career in comics.

This project was also great for meeting AmeriCorps NCCC Alumni. Two of the interns at the Presidio, Laura who we worked with, and Marlene who we shared our housing with were both part of the team that last served the Presidio and both got internships shortly afterward. We also by chance ran into an AmeriCorps Alumni from almost 10 years ago. Turns out he and several other members from his class all live in San Francisco now. They treated us to a nice dinner of Pizza and stories of their years with NCCC. After the we finished our project we headed back to Sacramento for a few days of training and then I went home for a couple weeks as part of my winter break. The first illustration is of our project portfolio cover that I did, the second picture is the flyer (also by me) for the community day for the Red Wood Creek Restoration that we put together. I fly back to Sac town tomorrow where I'll be for a few more days of training and then we begin Round 2; working at Camp Mokule'ia, in Waialua, Hawaii! This will probably be my last post for a while expect big things to happen with this blog as well as other locations on the internet come next month so until then Aloha!