Last year we teamed up with Partnership for L.A. Schools (PLAS) to help youth in underprivileged neighborhoods. The Mission Continues was recently recognized for this work as “Community Partner of The Year,” a distinction given to a PLAS partner who “passionately and generously works to develop and strengthen the school community.” The award was given at the Up Awards, which are hosted by PLAS annually to honor parents, teachers, and leaders in the community that support PLAS Schools.
The Mission Continues 2nd and 3rd Service Platoons in LA served in the Boyle Heights and Watts communities, respectively. Platoon Leaders Richard Krykew and Majken Geiman have lead the way in both leadership and heart to make this partnership flourish.
Our nation’s national parks were originally protected by the military, and for the past few months, The Mission Continues New York 3rd Platoon has continued to do just that. The platoon has sustained involvement with the largest national park in New York, Gateway National Recreation Area, which is home to both wildlife and historic forts.
Together, they have protected New York Harbor for over 200 years. Today, they remain among the oldest military installations in the country. To preserve this rich history, platoon members have worked over the past few months to rehabilitate a nature and history trail within the park. This trail, which has not been open to the public for decades, can now be used in educational tours that are the backbone of interpretation at the park. As the summer tourist season is about to begin, the opening of this trail could not have come at a better time.
Earlier this month, The Mission Continues worked alongside 1st grade students at Democracy Prep in Washington D.C. to put together a Teacher Work Room. Our regional Executive Director Mary Beth Bruggeman and service platoon member Johanna Ciezczak joined the project, which took place on the last day of the school’s week of service.
The week of service was implemented by teachers who wanted to build a culture of community service for students. While there, we had a chance to talk to 1st grade students about the importance of service and tell them our story. Most important, we shared how much we enjoy serving at their school and why we do it. Continue reading “Partaking in a Cycle of Service at Democracy Prep”
“Mom, they don’t even know me and they come here to make me smile. That is just like what you do, and I want to help too.” Jaiden Henry, eight years old and the son of Chicago’s 1st Platoon Leader Kim McGraw, had fallen ill and was temporarily hospitalized. To his amazement however, volunteers kept coming by to keep his spirits up.
He has since worked hard alongside his mother to inspire others to do the same.
It was Cinco De Mayo, my first platoon social event. I had just taken on the role of Platoon Leader, creating the 2nd platoon in Orlando FL, and was trying to figure out how it could best help the community.
As it turned out, we had bought too much food for everyone to eat that night. Throwing out the food would be a complete waste — all leftover food could easily feed 30 people! After a few internet searches we found a women’s shelter in the Orlando downtown area that accepted food donations. So I packed up the food and took it to the shelter.
Today we are putting the spotlight on a platoon that cares for the earth year-round. The Washington D.C. 4th Service Platoon has aligned its mission to be in support of National Park Service (NPS), which preserves natural and historical resources for this and future generations to enjoy. For their special Earth Day project, the D.C. 4th Platoon is teaming up with NPS and platoon supporter, Boeing.Continue reading “Blue Goes Green for Earth Day!”
In 1972, the American Institute for Public Service created the Jefferson Awards to recognize ordinary people who do extraordinary things for our country. Founded by Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis, the Jefferson Awards have become one of the most prestigious organizations dedicated to celebrating public service. Oprah Winfrey, Cory Booker, Ruth Bader Ginsburg are just some of the past honorees.
The Mission Continues will be in action this weekend and on Monday, January 18, in recognition of MLK Day 2016. The annual day of service, designated by Congress in 1994, celebrates the life of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Service Platoons are leading efforts in more than 20 cities nationwide throughout the weekend.
The DC Service Platoons banded together on Friday, September 11, 2015 for a day of service at Democracy Prep, a high impact charter school in Southeast DC. With the help of Democracy Prep students, parents and local police officers, volunteers revitalized a learning garden, painted the school crest and helped renovate the school’s exterior.
Fourteen years have come and gone since September 11, 2001, and for many the memory of that day will forever be defined by the sights and sounds of Ground Zero, the Pentagon and Shanksville, Pennsylvania. But in reflecting on the day, we also remember what has come after: sacrifice and continued service.
Five million Americans have served since fall of 2001. Each of their lives were transformed in countless ways by military action worldwide.
In continuing that call to action, our service platoons gathered in New York, Washington, DC, Dallas, Seattle and ten other cities to take part of the National Day of Service.
In New York, our local service platoons formed up within view of One World Trade Center to help restore areas of Ft. Wadsworth, a vital piece of U.S. military history, for a two-day project.
In collaboration with the National Park Service and a crew from Team Rubicon, our veteran volunteers removed more than 15 tons of debris and restored a camping area, which will make the historical site more welcoming for visitors in the months and years to come.
At our DC project, more than 80 volunteers, including motivated Wounded Warrior Project Alums and staff, gathered at a charter school and revitalized a learning garden for kids, painted a school crest and helped renovate the school exterior.
Kids and volunteers from Washington, DC service platoons gather to paint. Photo credit: GREG CALLAN,DEMOCRACY PREP PUBLIC SCHOOLS
Washington, DC platoon members restore the school’s exterior, September 11, 2015. GREG CALLAN, DEMOCRACY PREP PUBLIC SCHOOLS
Volunteers carry wood at Democracy Prep in Washington, DC, September 11, 2015. Photo credit: GREG CALLAN, DEMOCRACY PREP PUBLIC SCHOOLS
The anniversary was significant, and in more ways than some might think. As the projects continued, veterans reflected on how the work they were doing was going to impact tomorrow, not so much about the wars and military experience behind them. A new generation is waiting to take the reins, and the work of our platoons ensures they will know what it means to serve.