Starting in March 2013 Hopes Woodshop was asked to participate as a volunteer organization to help educate the participants of the Blackstone Valley Community Action Programs (BVCAP) Youthbuild program. I didn't hesitate, and accepted the responsibility of meeting with these students every Wednesday for the next 9 months.
Hopes Woodshop was just getting off the ground. We had our first real shop, a collection of used machines, and just enough to make it work.
Sometimes in life you need to take a leap of faith and trust that your doing the right thing. Even though it was hard, money was tight, and we struggled I had faith everything was going to be alright.
And once I was able to start really teaching and educating the students something in me clicked. I realized that the time I was spending with the students was the most important piece for me and them. We were forging a relationship based on our interactions with one another.
There was a profound message that I received after working with this group from Youthbuild. That message was "go out and do your best to educate the local youth with whatever you can and however you can. It can be something as simple as making an ornament that they can give to friends and family.
During our time together they:
- Learned the techniques and process of building tables
- Built cutting boards and ornaments
- Learned how to flatten and square up boards
- Built tops for desk donations
- Learned how to install vinyl replacement windows
- Visited the sawmill to see where our lumber comes from
It was a great time and we look forward to seeing each and everyone of them finding success now that they have finished the program!