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Et cetera : AmeriCorps NCCC Oak 5 Assists with Environmental Work at Gorman Heritage Farm

By: Courtney Kessinger and Savannah Smith

On March 11 at 6:45 am, AmeriCorps National Civilian Community Corps team Oak 5 left their campus in Vinton, Iowa and began their journey to Evendale, Ohio to serve with Gorman Heritage Farm and the Cincinnati VA Medical Center.

On Mondays and Tuesdays, the team has been assisting with grounds beautification and inventory at the Cincinnati VA Medical Center. On Wednesdays through Fridays, they help with environmental projects at Gorman Heritage Farm, such as maintaining trails and completing work related to stormwater management. The team has been working very hard at both locations, and even completing some projects ahead of schedule. Both sponsors have consistently expressed their appreciation of the teams work and the benefit of having an AmeriCorps NCCC team serving their community.

Working at the farm has been a great experience so far. We are able to not only help the farm and surrounding communities, but we are also learning a lot about native plants and how invasive species can cause major imbalances in ecosystems, shares Oak 5 member Braige Damon.

The mission of Gorman Heritage Farm is to promote the values of self-reliance and stewardship and service; to celebrate through food and events the culture and community of southwest Ohio; and to educate and inspire in equal measure the public as to the importance of agriculture, nutrition and sustainability and the environment. The VA Medical Center has a mission of honoring Americas veterans by providing exceptional health care that improves their health and well-being.

AmeriCorps NCCC member Isaiah is removing weeds in a flowerbed at the VA Medical Center.

AmeriCorps NCCC member Courtney is putting supplies in a bend at the VA Medical Center to help the people that need the supplies.

AmeriCorps NCCC member Scott is digging a trench with a pickaxe so that the water from the storms can train nicely down the hill.

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