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Volunteering for Earth Day with FIUTS

In honor of Earth Day, FIUTS students teamed up with EarthCorps to volunteer right in our neighborhood.

Guest Post by Thao Tran, FIUTS Facilitator

Though it was actually 3 days before the actual Earth Day, me and a handful of lively international students and cheerful facilitators decided to celebrate the event early.

The day started with clear skies in front of the Burke Museum (our usual meeting spot).

9:30am.

With the early hour on a Saturday morning, students and facilitators alike slowly shuffled to our meeting spot, waiting for all of us to arrive

Once 9:45am hit, however, we were all… kind of awake. So after introductions and ice breakers (because we all know we love those awkward games), one of the facilitators named Jacky guided the entire group of students and facilitators towards our volunteer site: Kincaid Ravine (which was literally walking distance away from campus and right next to U-Village). The moment we got to the site we were greeted with a durable tent, warm drinks, and a lot of friendly faces.

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After signing in and hearing all the safety rules concerning the tools we’d be handling, all the volunteers and staff split into two groups. Because FIUTS made up nearly half the volunteers, we were able to form our own group and were accompanied by three EarthCorps staff.

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With enthusiasm in their voices and what seemed like an unlimited amount of fun facts, these three individuals explained to us what the different plants were and emphasized which ones were harmful to the environment. I’m not sure about everyone else but their passion for what they were doing made this volunteer event all the more enjoyable.

After a couple of hours of picking off what they called “enemy #1” and “enemy #2”, our beautiful clear skies slowly transformed into the typical Seattle weather: Clouds and rain.

By noon everyone was completely drenched!

Once lunch break was announced, we all rushed safely under our tents and I was pleasantly surprised that not everyone’s spirits were washed away.

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After what seemed like only a couple minutes of break, it was back to work! And absolutely everyone worked their hardest until the very end. By 2pm – 3pm, we were all completely exhausted but despite this everyone seemed to acknowledge the contribution we made by volunteering there.

I would say that it was the end of a hard day’s work.

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