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Colorado Youth Corps Association


Mile High Youth Corps' Julian Garcia dreams of working for NASA. After completing his second term as a corpsmembers this month, there's no doubt that he's well on his way. "I plan to use my two AmeriCorps Education Awards to go back to school and study astronomy at the University of Colorado at Boulder."  

Julian spent the last seven months on a fire fuel mitigation crew, using a chainsaw to protect Golden Gate Canyon and Staunton State Parks from dangerous wildfires. "Chain sawing is a new skill that I never thought I would master. I like knowing how to take the saw apart, put it back together and use it to meet production demands. It's a skill I'll take with me."

At MHYC, Julian has turned a few heads. "In two terms, he's grown tremendously as an individual and as a worker," said Andrew Kennedy, Julian's Crew Leader. "Julian takes initiative and is always the first one at work in the mornings, the first one back after breaks and the last one to stop at the end of the day." 

Looking back, "MHYC has changed my perspective on life," said Julian. "I love the opportunity that the corps has given me; no one has ever done anything like this for me at any job I've ever had." 


On a project made possible by the State Land Board, nine corpsmembers from Mile High Youth Corps - Colorado Springs (MHYC-CS) spent a month this fall camping at Chico Basin Ranch, a working cattle ranch south of Colorado Springs. The corpsmembers installed approximately three miles of new fence line, removing old, rotten cedar posts and replacing them with new metal posts and a barbed wire fence. Many of the cedar posts dated back to the early 1900s. 

Twenty-two year-old corpsmember John Biggs relished the opportunity to connect with his state's roots. "Colorado has a long and proud ranching tradition, and I was excited to play a part in it."

Chico Basin's Lee Derr reflected on the professionalism of the MHYC-CS youth: "I spent a morning at the Chico Basin Bird Banding station with the young adults. They were intelligent, passionate about their work and very mature. It was a pleasure to show them around." 

The State Land Board manages the 87,000-acre, state-owned ranch and other property as a way to generate revenue for K-12 education. Hiring a youth corps to work on these properties allows the Land Board to support education efforts in new ways.  Corpsmembers gain on-the-job training and earn AmeriCorps Education Awards for their service.

"Most of our crew members had never experienced ranch life," said Nancy Wilson, the regional director at MHYC-CS. "It was a unique and exciting project to be involved with." 


Feeling generous around the holidays? Hoping to make a difference for Colorado's youth, communities and our environment? If so, make a gift to the Colorado Youth Corps Association (CYCA) on Tuesday, December 6th as part of Colorado Gives Day! Last year, generous donors contributed $8.7 million to local nonprofits as part of the inaugural effort. FirstBank is again offering a $500,000 Incentive Fund, assuring that your holiday contribution will provide even more employment and educational opportunities for young people. Please don't forget to support the Colorado Youth Corps Association through Colorado Gives Day on December 6th- click here to get started!

Busy on the 6th? No worries! You can still support CYCA just by doing your holiday shopping! Log onto and designate CYCA as your charity of choice. After that, enjoy tackling your holiday shopping via thousands of online stores, knowing that with each purchase you make, you'll give back to thousands of young adults across our beautiful state. 


Southwest Conservation Corps' wildfire training program for US veterans was recently featured on the CBS Evening News and on Colorado Public Radio. Tune in here:


CYCA welcomes our AmeriCorps VISTA Leader, Grant Sanford.  A native of New York State, Grant has over four years experience working with culturally diverse children, adolescents and community centers, as well as at both in- and outpatient treatment facilities. As a VISTA Leader, Grant Sanford assists CYCA in expanding the organizational infrastructure and providing sustainability services for youth corps and other community-based organizations in the state.  Prior to joining CYCA, Grant served as an AmeriCorps VISTA with Pan-African Association in Chicago, focusing on volunteer coordination and program development for refugee and immigrant populations. Grant earned his bachelor's degree in International Studies and Spanish from Niagara University and his graduate degree in Social Work from the University at Buffalo - The State University of New York. Grant can be reached at

CYCA is currently seeking a part-time Administrative Assistant/Bookkeeper.  Resume and application are due December 7, 2011.  For position description and application, go to

Our mailing address is:
Colorado Youth Corps Association
1640 N Grant St Ste 210
Denver, CO 80203-1621

Main: 303-863-0600
Fax: 303-863-0610
Copyright (C) 2009 Colorado Youth Corps Association All rights reserved.
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