I think everyone is dying to know how we survived in blazing 85 degree heat and how the “city-slickers” fared with manual labor farming. You could say I’m normally the ‘eat food but don’t know where it comes from’ type of person but that day everything changed because I was ready to get down and dirty.
Mentor. A word with over fifty definitions if you search hard enough. In its most basic form, it means “A wise and trusted counselor or teacher.” Or in the transitive form, “to serve as a trusted counselor or teacher.” But strict definitions of a word can hardly begin to explain what it truly means to be a mentor.
I do not like hiking. I do not find joy in walking for hours in the sun just to see a view. If I wanted to see and pretty view of a waterfall I would pick up a National Geographic or look it up on the Internet. So when my sister Chiloe, who works for tSB, told me that I would be hiking I was less than thrilled…
Last week we celebrated May Day with a program focused on immigration. Many tSB participants understand the challenges and beauty of being an immigrant first hand, or see it on a daily basis. To set the tone, we invited tSB alumnus and recent 2014 Youth Speaks Seattle Grand Slam Champion Carlos Nieto to share one of his poems:
This is for every time a politician on the news made you feel less than human.
This is for wanting to go to college but being the only person in your class that can’t sign up for FAFSA.
This is for being afraid to tell people where you’re from.
This is for being of ashamed of telling your best friends where your mom works.
This is for watching your mom work so hard for years just to feel American.
This is for silenced voices and tired dreams.
You wouldn’t think I was an immigrant.
Yes, I understand your pop-culture references,
I hit my Dougie with you,
I laugh with you,
I do homework with you,
I fought with you,
I fought for you,
I am dating you,
I am your best friend,
The person who told you you dropped your wallet this morning on the bus,
I am serving your drinks,
Taking care of your kids,
I even speak the same language as you. I barely have my accent anymore.
Even my clothes don’t give me away: shirt from Columbia, boxers from Portugal, hat from Peru, shit even our clothes our immigrants too!
So why do you hate me so much?
Why do you call me illegal? As if existing was a crime.
White American, conservative politicians, I am not illegal.
I am not a criminal.
Criminal is profiting off of people being stuck in a prison cell.
Criminal is denying food stamps to people who actually need them.
Criminal is tearing apart families that are already on three legs.
Criminal is feeling unsafe in Arizona.
Criminal is killing people at the border instead of detaining them.
Criminal are free trade agreements that screw over farm workers, why do you think we are here in the first place?
Do not talk to me about criminal, America. The only reason I go to college, as cliché as it sounds, is it to one day have a good enough job to my mom a house she can call her own because God only knows how much she has sacrificed for me.
Talking about how “illegal aliens mooch off the system.”
We pay taxes just like you: Sales, property, federal, you name it!
Talking about how “letting illegal aliens are running this country to the ground by stealing all the jobs.
WE DO NOT STEAL YOUR JOBS. We steal your jobs the same way people of color steal white people’s places at universities, WE DO NOT STEAL YOUR JOBS.
IF WE STEAL YOUR JOBS THEN YOU STOLE THIS LAND, except that’s actually true.
We wake up in the morning to go to work just like you.
On the run.
We don’t run this shit but we make this shit run. You’re welcome for the $300 billion in your social security trust fund. WE will NEVER see a penny of it.
You need us America. You have always needed us.
Who do you think built you? What do you think you’re made out of?
So stop throwing money at the border expecting us to go away.
Stop trying to push us under the rug.
Stop talking about “catch and release” methods as if we are animals.
We are human.
We are human just like you.
We are Americans just like you.
We are immigrants. Just. Like. You.
Poem by Carols Nieto, tSB class of 2011 & 2012
It’s that time again to dig into your Dad’s closet and pull out those one piece powder suits, 210 skinny skis or your snurfer and steal your Grandma’s fanny pack! Retro Fools Day is back at Stevens Pass this year for another day of rowdy’ness and neon over-kill all to support the Service Board.
Hello fellow readers, welcome to the tSB blog! If you don’t know already, the Service Board is a year long youth empowerment program where we gather together a group of youth and mentors to discuss about social justice within our community on Wednesday nights as well as eating dinner together. In addition, we alternate between community service and snowboarding on Sundays. This program enforces youth to push their growing edges and gain a whole new sense of family. So, let’s get to the main part, shall we?
This past Sunday, February 23, 2014, tSB 2014 went up the Summit at Snoqualmie for the first day of snowboarding. The day started off with check-in, boarding people and things on the bus, along with lots of chattering and singing (what I think is the sound of totally excited prophets)! Continuing with this boost of excitement, was the movie that played on the bus which consisted of snowboarders doing all sorts of tricks. Before we all knew it, we were on the mountain! *snap, snap, snap, clap, clap, clap*
After we hopped off the bus (shout out to bus driver Mark!), everyone gathered boards and coolers to the lodge. We soon split up into our family groups and went our own way. With the help of awesome and very well-trained snowboarding instructors, mentors and peer leaders, our new riding prophets glided down the fresh powder of snow for the first time! tSB was lucky to have had such a nice day and a fresh dumping of powder to fall into on our first trip up in the mountain.
I can still hear the strapping of the boards. There were prophets that constantly fell and others that rode like superstars, but despite all the falling and potential bruised buttocks, our tSB prophets continued to improve their posture and stances. On top of building up their confidence and boldness that reached to the depth of their sore toes! One word to describe them? Fearless.
Around 1:30, family groups met back up at the lodge where we were supposed to head home, but due to chain difficulties on the bus, we ate lunch instead. As more people returned, everyone tiredly carried the items back to the bus and came back to form a large gratitude circle. In tSB, a gratitude circle is what we usually do at the end of program days and say what we are grateful/thankful for, something new we learned, or shout outs to certain people. In this case, of course, positive comments illuminated the air. ( : All in all, this snowboarding opportunity that tSB has to offer, creates stronger bonds and smiles on the faces of old and new riders. Most of all, we are all totally stoked for snowboarding day 2!!!