We all know the importance of giving back. Whether we take part in a neighborhood cleanup, serve food at a homeless shelter, or just walk our neighbor’s dog, there’s a sense of connection that we feel when we take time out of our day to help others. At TCS, our focus is on fostering an environment that deepens the connections and relationships that our participants develop in their life. We create opportunities for participants to engage not only with each other, but also with the larger community. Through our internship program, participants are able to volunteer their time and talents to local organizations, ranging from local recycling centers like Live Thrive’s Center For Hard to Recycle Materials (CHARM) to the Decatur YMCA.
Currently, our participants have dedicated one afternoon per week to helping at the Wylde Center, a local garden cultivating a variety of greens, fruits, and vegetables. While at the garden participants work together to plant veggies, water the garden, till soil, and even set up for the fall plant sale! Oftentimes, they partner up to work more effectively and efficiently. The tasks present an opportunity for participants to engage with each other and with staff. In this way they can develop positive interactions around the work that they’re doing while also growing socially and emotionally. During each task, both TCS staff and Wylde Center staff make a point to encourage the participants, reminding them of how beneficial their work is to the overall upkeep of the garden. It really is wonderful to see our participants show great enthusiasm about participating in internships like this and to see them enjoying a greater of sense of what it means to be in a community.