PRESS RELEASE: Bex Love Selected by The Corps Network as 2019 Corps Member of the Year

December 17, 2019 | Press Release

VYCC Corps Member Wins National Award

Bex Love Selected by The Corps Network as 2019 Corps Member of the Year

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

CONTACT:  Daniel Schmidt, VYCC’s Office of Programs

802-434-3969 ext. 100 | Llu@VYCC.org

RICHMOND, VT, Tuesday, April 2, 2019 –

The Vermont Youth Conservation Corps (VYCC) is excited to announce that Bex Love, a young adult AmeriCorps Corps Member from a 2019 Conservation Crew, has won Corps Member of the year from The Corps Network.

Nationally over 25,000 Corps Members work, learn, and explore the outdoors from coast to coast. The Corps Members of the Year are young people who, through their term of service in a Corps, have demonstrated personal growth, outstanding leadership skills, and a sincere commitment to helping their community. All winners of the Corps Member of the Year Award are nominated by their Corps. Here in Vermont, Love was selected due to their personal growth and impressive character development while working on a VYCC crew with six Members.

Reflecting on their season, Bex Love said, “this type of work is so satisfying; being able to build things and see the results of a super muddy trail, building drainage structures and learning how to make trails better. And now I want to do more and more of this work. I can see myself as a leader in this field because of all the leadership opportunities I’ve gotten on a (VYCC) spike crew. Being on a spike crew means getting dirty, waking up with the sunrise in a beautiful place, struggling, but growing from those struggles. It means building beautiful things in the woods for communities of people to use for years and years to come.”

Love’s crew was a long-term, camping crew, that worked from June until late October on high priority conservation projects across the state. These included invasive water chestnut removal, construction of mountain biking trails, a six-week trail maintenance project on the Appalachian Trail, and construction of a footbridge over the East Creek in Chittenden, VT.

“One of the things I appreciate about Bex is that they are always thinking beyond the immediate task at hand to how to each tasks ties into the project as a whole. As Bex grew in their knowledge of the work, they developed into a very effective leader in the field. I believe that wherever Bex goes they will emerge as a leader and will be a great asset to the community they serve.” remarked Sage Hill, Love’s Crew Leader.

“Bex didn’t have any experience in conservation work or much experience camping, but jumped right in. Their energy was contagious and helped the crew develop positive energy, better communication and their efforts resulted in a remarkable season. They truly came together as one of VYCC’s highest performing teams.” said Daniel Schmidt, VYCC’s Office of Programs. “Bex’s willingness to try new things, engage in meaningful conversations and make room for growth led them to be a natural leader amongst their Crew Members.”

Love finished their AmeriCorps Corps Member position in late October and is now a disaster relief volunteer in Puerto Rico. They, along with five other Corps Members of the Year will be honored at a ceremony on February 12, 2020 on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC as part of The Corps Network’s 35th annual national conference, “Thrive: The Power of Community.”  For more information about the conference, please visit https://www.corpsnetwork.org/conference/.

In 2019, Love and their crewmates, were part of 224 VYCC Corps Members working on crews that tackled projects in conservation and farming. Each year, VYCC hires and trains Vermonters and young people from around the country to work as a team on outdoor projects that matter to communities around the state. Applications for positions like Love’s are available starting January 1, 2020 at VYCC.org/Join.

VYCC is one of more than 130 member organizations of The Corps Network. As defined by The Corps Network, Corps are local, state or national programs that engage young adults (generally ages 16 – 26) and veterans (up to age 35) in service activities addressing conservation and community needs. Through a term of service that could last from a few months to a year, Corps participants – or “Corps Members” – complete meaningful projects while gaining job experience and developing in-demand skills.

“The Corps Members of the Year are role models. These are young people who have exceeded expectations and earnestly invested their time and energy in service and civic engagement. Their personal stories and accomplishments are an inspiration to other young people serving in Corps across the country.” said Mary Ellen Sprenkel, President and CEO of The Corps Network. “All our member Corps and Corps Members make significant contributions to communities across the country. With this award, we celebrate those who have gone above and beyond and exemplify the impact of national service. The Corps Network is humbled to engage with such inspiring people as Bex Love and programs like VYCC.”

More about VYCC: 

Vermont Youth Conservation Corps is a 501c3 nonprofit youth development organization that believes young people change the world. VYCC achieves this by teaching young people personal responsibility through meaningful work that connects us to the land, community, and one another. For more than 30 years, VYCC has held the belief that when provided the right tools, young people can change the world. VYCC pays young people, ages 15-26, to work and learn side by side with conservation and farming experts to tackle climate change, food insecurity, and preserve public lands. VYCC.org

ABOUT THE CORPS NETWORK

The Corps Network, the national association of Service and Conservation Corps, provides leadership and support to over 130 Corps across the United States. Through advocacy, and providing Corps access to funding opportunities and expert guidance, The Corps Network annually enables more than 25,000 Corps Members to strengthen communities, improve the environment and transform their lives through service. To learn more about The Corps Network, visit www.corpsnetwork.org.

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