Heritage Nursery volunteering has impact on youth ambassadors

 In Blog, Heritage Nursery, Volunteers

Vol­un­teers from the Youth Ambas­sadors Pro­gram with South Amer­i­ca (YAPSA) vol­un­teered at the nurs­ery Thurs­day, Novem­ber 2nd. Their expe­ri­ence at the Her­itage Nurs­ery had an impact that went beyond the hours they spent on our site.

YAPSA is a pro­gram of the U.S. Depart­ment of State, Bureau of Edu­ca­tion­al and Cul­tur­al Affairs, admin­is­tered by Amizade. This exchange pro­gram offers a unique oppor­tu­ni­ty for a diverse group of young peo­ple from Peru to trav­el, learn about anoth­er cul­ture, devel­op lead­er­ship skills, and become empow­ered to make pos­i­tive changes in their communities.

The YAPSA vol­un­teers received a river­front tour from Joe Stavish, our Com­mu­ni­ty Edu­ca­tion Coor­di­na­tor, and learned about com­mu­ni­ty forestry. Then, the stu­dents helped with var­i­ous tasks around the Her­itage Nurs­ery, includ­ing seed pro­cess­ing and nurs­ery win­ter­i­za­tion. The vol­un­teers helped to move plants around the nurs­ery site in prepa­ra­tion for a larg­er greenhouse.

After their four weeks in the U.S., the stu­dents are tasked with design­ing and imple­ment­ing a Com­mu­ni­ty Action Project upon return to Peru. As a result of spend­ing time with Tree Pitts­burgh, four of the youth ambas­sadors decid­ed to focus their Com­mu­ni­ty Action Projects on plant­i­ng trees in their neigh­bor­hoods to enhance their com­mu­ni­ties, raise aware­ness about envi­ron­men­tal issues, and inspire com­mu­ni­ty mem­bers to prac­tice envi­ron­men­tal care!

Amizade volunteers get riverfront tourWe are so excit­ed that time spent at the Her­itage Nurs­ery led to these four ambas­sadors cre­at­ing projects to plant trees. Trees have eco­nom­ic, envi­ron­men­tal, health, social, and polit­i­cal ben­e­fits that are sure to impact these ambas­sadors’ com­mu­ni­ties! You can learn more about the ben­e­fits of trees here.

We are so grate­ful to all of the vol­un­teers who make our work pos­si­ble. Our Her­itage Nurs­ery is closed for the win­ter, but will open to vol­un­teer groups again in the spring. Watch our events cal­en­dar for more infor­ma­tion on open vol­un­teer days, or con­tact Her­itage Nurs­ery Man­ag­er Megan Hig­gins Palo­mo to sched­ule a vol­un­teer day for your group. To learn more about the Her­itage Nurs­ery, vis­it the Her­itage Nurs­ery web­site.

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