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.
We Conquered Mountains!
This was another successful tSB winter introducing our youth (and a few mentors) to the incredible sport of snowboarding and we want to celebrate the end of the season with you. Come to Poquitos on Capitol Hill this Monday, May 12 from 3-8pm. There will be a pig in the ground, music from DJ Mullet and great company. Ninkasi sales benefit tSB and we are also raffling off tons of gear from our friends in the snow industry as well as two three-day passes to the Capitol Hill Block Party and four weekend passes (plus camping!) to Timber! Outdoor Music Festival. You could even go home with shot ski of your own. Bring your friends and celebrate with tSB.
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!!!
In preparation for our (rescheduled) first day on the mountain during our Winter Program, tSB hosted a “Service Your Board” night where Prophets, Peer Leaders and Mentors could learn about the equipment they’ll be riding this season.
Here, the group spent two hours learning why waxing their snowboards are so important, how to keep up a good wax coating and what they’d need in order to do this on their own. It’s important to tSB to not only introduce Snowboard Culture to its participants, but also teach our Youth and Mentors how to make sure they can keep up this challenging, outdoor, winter-weather sport even after their time at tSB is through. This great event helped us support this goal and acclimate our new snowboarders to life riding #pow.
We had a great turn out and were able to wax about 20 Boards. tSB is hoping to host a Service Your Board Night Part II in the next few weeks for those that missed out last week and for returners to expand their knowledge of equipment.
- Hired two incredible new staff members: Jill Kinison, Outdoor Program & Volunteer Coordinator and Sara Pournoor, Program Coordinator.
- Purchased a much needed 12-passenger van with a grant from the Boeing Employee Community Fund.
- Grew our summer program to include paid youth internships with Rudy’s Barbershop.
- Worked with the United Way & 501 Commons to improve our volunteer experience.
- Cultivated partnerships with Coach Across America, YDEKC and School’s Out Washington to strengthen the quality and outcomes of our programs.
- Started the process of visioning for organizational growth in 2014 and 2015.
If that weren’t enough good news, this fall, tSB received the Colleen Willoughby Youth Civic Engagement Award and we were recently nominated for a prestigious award from the Road Map Project — what a great year it has been!
Thank you so much for being a part of our success. We cannot wait to keep pushing our growing edge with you in 2014!
Last weekend we partnered with Stevens Pass Mountain Resort ski school to provide half of our Snowboard Instructor volunteers with teaching training. Despite being freezing cold, our Instructors came away with better tools to coach our youth this year: shared terminology, a learning progression, new games to teach skills, basic safety lessons and ways to give feedback. Plus we all became stronger riders.
HEY! Are you a high school student? Live in Seattle? Need community service? Want to learn to snowboard and meet awesome people? You qualify to be a tSB prophet!
APPLICATIONS ARE DUE NOV. 15th
What to know before you apply:
- Starting 1/5, tSB meets every Sunday & Wednesday. Wednesday meetings take place at the Lodge Room in Washington Hall from 6-8:30pm (153 14th Avenue | Seattle, Washington 98122)
- Sunday, we’ll be alternating between community service and shredding mountains!
- There’s a $35 fee per snowboarding trip, scholarships are available. (We provide the gear, lessons and buses to the mountain)
Yesterday, United Way of King County hosted its annual Day of Caring Event and the Service Board was lucky enough to have their project selected. Yesterday, we hosted 23 volunteers from Microsoft’s User Experience – Bing Division. Their mission: help tSB reorganize our equipment and apparel from our basement to gear up for our snowboarding season.
For those of you who have seen our basement, you know this was quite the undertaking…but nothing that this group couldn’t handle. For four hours, we moved, sorted, compiled and played with our gear.
A big shout out to our handy volunteers who moved furniture, built new organizing systems, folded clothes
and especially to those that weren’t afraid to get a little dirty!
We honestly couldn’t have done any of this without you. We want to extend a huge thank-you to everyone that came out to support #tSB to help us get organized for our winter program during the #dayofcaring.