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Make a Difference Day

October 28, 2023

The 4th Saturday of October is a national day of service called Make a Difference Day! UCA staff, Erik and Julia, are part of the Planning Committee for the Make a Difference Day - Douglas County event. This planning committee consists of dedicated community partners who are invested in the health and community of Douglas County. Since March, they have been meeting to plan this 2nd Annual event which grew from 12 projects to a total of 17 projects this year!

UCA is proud to have partnered with Sleep in Heavenly Peace with our team and worked together with a group of over 55 volunteers to build 10 beds for children in need of a safe and comfortable place to rest their head. We are truly inspired by the efforts and dedication these volunteers gave.

Fall Team Training

October 13, 2023

Happy Fall! Our members came together for our first team training to learn about Volunteer Management skills. From learning how to rope new volunteers in with a creative mission statement, to recognizing and retaining volunteers to help sustain their programs, the team paired up to discuss new ideas and share what has worked in the past. Our amazing facilitator, Erin, has returned annually to lead this training for many years and we are always so grateful for the resources she provides our team. Thank you!

For the second half of the day, we traveled over to the Discovery Garden to admire the fall foliage and blossoms while learning a bit more about each other through National Service 4 Corners. 

Member Orientation 2023-2024

August 30 - September 1, 2023

United Communities AmeriCorps is so excited to welcome our 2023-2024 team! We hosted Orientation at the Oregon Institute of Marine Biology in Charleston, while spending time learning about each other through team building activities as well as everything they need to know before getting started for their first day of service.

This year our team is smaller than usual, comprised of 3 new members and 3 returning members. Although we hope to grow the team throughout the year, we are excited to maximize the strengths and unique benefits of a smaller team.

Day 2 of orientation may have been a rainy day on the coast, but we sure made the most of it! The morning was spent learning more about each other through life story maps, sharing how each member got to where they are now. What’s a rainy day without a movie?! Members watched American Idealist and other videos on civic engagement to give them a better understanding on the history and importance of national service.

We were lucky enough to be on site of our member Nadia’s host site, the Charleston Marine Life Center. Nadia led a wonderful tour around all the aquariums. We were even greeted by their Giant Pacific Octopus, Ivan, as he showed off for the group after he was fed his daily crab. To end the day, we headed to Bastendorff Beach for a small service project and team bonding activity, cleaning up the local beach and roadways.

Welcome Ashtin, Julie, Tracy, Kalee, Nadia & Lakia! We look forward to another great year of service together!

End of Service Celebration

July 31, 2023

Happy last day of service!

Last Friday, UCA hosted our End of Service Celebration at River Forks Park. We had such a wonderful time sharing our appreciation and reflecting with one another about all the amazing service our members accomplished this year. We gathered for a potluck, presented their Member Awards created by their supervisors and Certificates of National Service, as well as a team reflection circle to share about all the successes, struggles and value of service. We wish you all the best and thank you for a wonderful year of service!

Just to give you a sense of the impact our team has collectively had in our communities this year, they have recruited and/or supported 814 community members who volunteered a combined 6,733 hours in service to their organizations. Additionally, through direct service they have engaged 3,532 individuals in programming, 2,875 of which were youth. Lastly, they have leveraged $3,547.94 worth of donations to support their service projects. The impact our members have had this year is truly amazing, and we are so proud to have worked alongside such a special group of individuals! 

June Service Day!

June 16, 2023

For our June Service Day, UCA partnered with the Southern Oregon Land Conservancy to participate in land stewardship efforts at the Rogue River Preserve! This included pulling invasive yellow starthistle from the meadows, as well as collecting native lemmon's needlegrass seed so it can be planted at another location.

UCA appreciates the commitment and passion SOLC has for the environment and for inviting us to celebrate the land for the day. A huge thank you goes out the SOLC, The Understory Initiative, volunteers and of course, our wonderful members for all the invaluable service they do for our local communities. 

Spring Team Meeting!

April 28, 2023

For our Spring Team Meeting, we had a beautiful day to celebrate team building through Burst of Brilliance (BOB) Talks, AmeriCorps Jeopardy, National Service 4 Corners and some delicious lunch from Lighthouse Bakery. Members brought their energy and passion while sharing their expertise on topics ranging from training foster dogs, propagating houseplants, the wealth of walking, pickleball and ocean themed true or false. A special shout out to the Umpqua Community Center for hosting our event. It was the perfect space to enjoy the day together! Thank you! 

MLK Jr. Day - A Day On, Not A Day Off

January 16, 2023

A special thanks goes out to the Millicoma Marsh crew, Coos Watersheds, volunteers, our sponsors who donated snacks, beverages and equipment, and our United Communities AmeriCorps team who organized this entire event! We focused on pulling invasive species and clearing out debris in the Swallow Loop Trail to make it more accessible to the public and local students. All the clippings and debris were put into piles off trail to create small habitats for the local wildlife. They divided and conquered the work within 4 committees leading up to this event. Great job, Team!!