Introducing the seven exceptional leaders who were chosen to represent the SCA at the #NestléCares events in Stamford, CT on August 10th! Together, they formed a well-rounded group from diverse backgrounds and they completed each task with a smile. I was thrilled to get to know each one of them. They motivated volunteers and contributed substantially to the overall success of the project. I couldn’t have done it without their sharp eyes and initiative! Anyone who works with the SCA becomes part of the family. Although we’re far-flung now, this experience binds us together.
Jump Photo Left to Right: Michelle, Moxie, Hayden, Jaylen, Manny, Sam, Jane
Jane Chan led the seed ball activity at Nestlé Waters NA Headquarters in Stamford. She has been volunteering and working with SCA at various events for a few years now. She is an experienced volunteer leader and a refreshing dose of kindness in the world. Her instruction and youthful spirit helped Nestlé employees “get in touch with their ‘inner child’ and have fun mixing the clay and soil.” Jane reminds us that “it is so crucial for people of any age to experience nature, however small or brief that single experience may be, just like making seed balls.”
Sam March took charge of social media for the Cove Island project. His previous experience with the SCA set him well for this role. You can see his tweets @Sam_March1 on Twitter. He took a number of photos and showcased the volunteers’ enthusiasm, which was mirrored by his own energy. He “loved how dedicated the volunteers were to complete the task (skipping lunch to finish working, lunch then return to finish)” and it showed through his social media posts.
April Chang was the event photographer for the project on Cove Island. She captured fun moments as Nestlé volunteers smiled, joked, and laughed as they worked. She has left us with lasting memories and photographic evidence of the impressive effort that the SCA and Nestlé teams put together. She was struck by the people and the experience, remarking that “it’s rare to have such a majority of 75+ people be so enthusiastic about leaving the world we live in a little better than we found it. This experience with the SCA was my first but I’m sure it’ll be the most memorable. Everything from the minute we arrived was beyond my expectations and I’m so happy I got to document it.”
Jaylen Givens was a guide throughout the day, from bringing people in through the reception tent, to working the seed ball table with gusto, and finally setting up and coordinating people at the pavilion for lunch. He was a versatile worker who will be ready to take charge next time! “My highlights were definitely, working with the Curbside food truck, and the Cove Island park staff to setup and organize the food for the volunteers. Something I would like to try again, if there is another opportunity, is being in charge of the seed ball table.”
Manny Jones returned to his birthplace for this event, embracing the park and Nestlé employees of Stamford to create a more beautiful space for residents. He led project group 2 and put safety first by ensuring each volunteer stayed hydrated. “This was an amazing experience to give back to my hometown. All of the SCA leaders were a joy to work with. I will be more than willing to attend another SCA volunteer event in the near future and even far future as an Alumni!”
Moxie Niedenthal is currently a leader with the PA Outdoor Corps. She was a powerhouse for this event, helping set up, work registration, and talk with all the volunteers about conservation issues and more! She led project group 3 and triple checked the work quality. Her leadership skills shined! She “enjoyed the interaction with the diverse group of Nestlé employees,” the “can-do attitude of the volunteers,” and “the fact that we facilitated an event that will help people enjoy the natural world more in the future.”
Michelle Burt is also a leader with the PA Outdoor Corps. At Cove Island, she led project group 1 and helped set up for the day. She was right there whenever I needed anything, did great quality control work, and had no qualms about taking charge of coordinating with the park partner to set up materials. “I had a great time working with the Nestlé employees! I was surprised and thrilled to see how excited a lot of them were to be there learning about conservation and participating in an event to help Cove Island park, as well as their determination to finish the project even after the event was over.”
A thousand and one thanks to these individuals, for being helpful, hard-working, and genuinely interesting people. Y’all have some great stories! Until next time, team!