Friday, September 28, 2018


In honor of the national day of service observed on September 11th, Montana Campus Compact national service members spent the last few weeks engaging in service projects around the state. VISTA members Rachel Juel, Eli Bowe, Andrew Prior, Kaleigh Mency, and Yanet Eudave Marin collaborated with other service members and a local farm to harvest 982 pounds of apples for the Gallatin Valley Food Bank in Bozeman.

Members in the Flathead Valley, Navraj Kaler, JJ Dynneson, and Courtney Olson also collaborated with service members from other projects to volunteer at the Montana Dragon Boat Festival in Lakeside, an event sponsored by Kalispell Regional Healthcare. The members were excited to play a part in a great community event! Tansy Remiszewski in Missoula also volunteered with a community event, serving food, beverages, and hospitality at the Missoula Urban Demonstration Project's annual garden party fundraiser.

Paxton McCausland, a VISTA member serving in Helena, participated in a service project at a Habitat for Humanity build-out site in East Helena. Paxton was thrilled to not only help build a house for a family in need, but also to learn how to use a reciprocating saw, a hand saw, and a nail gun (his personal favorite).

Missoula area VISTA members Emma Giron, Ashley Hettler, Alexi Corbett, Syed Hossain, Marlena Weiss and Maryelizabeth Koepele worked to pack snacks at the Missoula Food Bank to help out with their EmpowerPack Program, which sends snacks home with school children over the weekends.

Alexis Burton organized two community clean up events in Troy. Her first cleanup event was with a group of sixth graders. Alexis was pleasantly surprised to see how much the students enjoyed the event; they spent three hours happily picking up trash and asked her when they could do it again! Her second event was with another service member, and the two of them were able to collect twelve 10-gallon buckets buckets worth of trash from around Troy’s community dump and the back side of the Frisbee Golf Course.

AmeriCorps Leaders and VISTA members created care packages for first responders in their host site areas. Care packages were delivered on 9/11 to thank first responders for their service.  Leader Daniele Vickers presented her care package to Mr. Willy Torros, who is the Department Head of Marcus Daly Memorial Hospital EMS. Maryelizabeth Koepele, Lana Petrie, Sabrina Quimby, Jordan Fernandez, Nicole Lemaster, Clara Moser, Loni Neilson-Kattel, Marlena Weiss, and Syed Hossain visited Missoula Fire Departments to show their gratitude. Not pictured: Dayton Smith, Adam Maes, Amber Dechaine, Chandler Padgett, and Amon Barry delivered care packages in their respective host site towns.

Montana Campus Compact service members were thankful to have the opportunity to engage in such a wide variety of projects in Montana!

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