As the sun came out, ECM volunteers and residents basked in the sun on this particular Work Day. Well, we didn’t bask in the sun, but we did sweat a lot. The day not only brought the sun, but also brought enthusiasm and smiles amongst our volunteers. God’s Grace Community Church, Greenwood Couples Class, Heritage Title Company, Human Services Education of Denver, International Baccalaureate Latino Association, North Highland, and West Colfax Association of Neighbors were the groups volunteering on this day. Plus, there were many individual volunteers who participated in the efforts. I had my attention focused on one particular resident and our Extreme Teams volunteers.
Pam, a resident for two years in the Westwood neighborhood, has been working hard to return her yard and home back to its former glory. She is an entrepreneur and artist and she has found very creative ways to make her backyard magical, fun, and productive. She plans on planting gourds and loofah plants. Who knew loofahs came from a plant. I didn’t! She will use the gourds to make art and grow loofahs to sell, along with her lotions and journals on ETSY. Pam’s peaceful demeanor and sunny smile made it a pleasure to talk to her and work with her. She told me that her summer will be spent working on her yard and getting her products ready for sale.
Extreme is definitely an appropriate description for our extreme teams members. The teams are made up of amazing people with many talents, with big hearts, and seemingly unending energy to get the job done.
Our photographer, Josh with his friendly face and funny quips, is not only talented with his camera, but has the ability to bring out the best of his subjects while on the Photography Team.
Our Supplies Team person, Brianne, can be seen driving around and dropping off extra supplies or running errands. On this Work Day, she was spotted taking one for the team. Brianne, made a pit stop to drop off trash at the dumpsters and she could not find a parking spot (it was a very busy street). She had to leave her car running while she tossed out trash. And, unfortunately, she got a parking ticket. Not happy with the ticket, Brianne turned the situation and her displeasure back towards her support for ECM. She informed the meter maid that we were all here to help this neighborhood and that we should all come together as a community to support each other. As I monitored our command center the rest of the afternoon, the meter maid was nowhere to be seen. Thank you Brianne for your community spirit!
Eric, a Projects Team member, can be seen driving the ECM truck around and picking up trash and delivering it to the dumpster. It is not the most fun, cleanest or easiest job, but Eric does this job with enthusiasm, with a smile, and with the best attitude. His wife, Linda, is a part of the Follow-Up Team and can be described with the same attributes as her husband. In my short time with ECM, I have seen Linda wear many hats, from photographer, to setting up the command center, to handing out resource packets of information to the neighbors. This husband and wife team is a pleasure and privilege to work with and ECM is fortunate to have them on the teams.
Kenzie, a Logistics Team member, always has a friendly manner and always gives attention to detail as she checks in volunteers. On this day, she picked up the lunch and set it up. She was diligent to pitch in where ever she was needed by cleaning up, returning supplies, handing out ice cream, holding a post at our command center, and finally getting ECM supplies back to their home. Her sunny disposition and energy were a perfect blend with the other ECM volunteers.
Last, but not least is Angela. Angela is our ECM coordinator and the one who makes this all happen. Angela wears most hats at ECM. She is the first to arrive on site and the last to leave. Angela checks people in, she drives around checking in on volunteers and residents, and she keeps things running smoothly. Angela always shows up with a smile and an attitude that everything will get done. What I notice the most, is her passion for this work and this organization.
I am Lisa. I am on the Communications Team and the one writing this blog post. This is my second year at Extreme Community Makeover. The people and the experiences at ECM always inspire me. I do this work because it fills my soul, and the connections and experiences I encounter create a more fulfilling life. ECM continues to build relationships and inspires cooperation, compassion and friendship amongst all it’s team members! I am thankful to be a part of this organization.
~Lisa, ECM Communications Team