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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Date: March 21, 2007
Contact: Jim Meisner Jr., DCR Public Relations Specialist, (804) 786-8442, firstname.lastname@example.org
Virginia State Parks seek Youth Conservation Corps members
(RICHMOND) ? The Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation is looking for a few good young women and men to serve the Commonwealth of Virginia.
DCR is accepting applications for two three-week sessions of the Virginia State Parks Youth Conservation Corps (YCC), scheduled June 24 to July 14 and July 21 to Aug. 11.
?The Youth Conservation Corps is an exciting and challenging opportunity for students 14-17 years of age to serve the Commonwealth,? said DCR Director Joseph H. Maroon. ?Service to others is an honorable, character-building pursuit, and the YCC fills needs in our state parks and in the lives of young people.?
YCC participants assist with an assortment of projects in Virginia State Parks, including wildlife and fisheries habitat improvement, trail and campground construction and restoration, timber and shoreline improvement, and landscape beautification, Maroon said.
The YCC is modeled after the federal service program AmeriCorps and the depression-era Civilian Conservation Corps that built the original six Virginia State Parks.
Teams of 10-12 participants will be chosen from current high school students aged 14-17 (participants must be 14 by June 1) who demonstrate an interest in protecting Virginia?s environment.
While no prior experience is necessary, participants will work outside, and the service is physically demanding. A positive attitude, an interest in learning, curiosity about interpreting nature, and the physical ability and desire to work on outdoor projects are also important factors in the selection process.
The 2007 YCC sessions will be held at 18 state parks across the Commonwealth. YCC crew members are provided room, board, tee-shirts and work-related equipment, and receive a $500 stipend at the end of the three weeks.
?The work is outdoors and often physically demanding, but the memories and experiences they take away last forever,? said YCC Coordinator Gaston Rouse.
Adult supervisors at least 21 years old also are needed for the program.
?Supervisors lead and direct all activities of their crew,? Rouse said. ?They have the opportunity to make a difference in our state parks and in the lives of the corps members.?
Supervisor applicants undergo a criminal background check before being hired. They receive a $1,500 work stipend and a $350 travel stipend upon completion of the program.
?YCC participants make permanent and important contributions to our parks,? said DCR State Parks Director Joe Elton. ?At the same time, they learn valuable life lessons that raise their awareness of environmental stewardship, teach them job skills, discipline and the importance of teamwork, and improve their self-esteem and confidence.?
The YCC application deadline for both students and supervisors is April 13. For more information or an application, contact Rouse at (703) 583-5497, e-mail email@example.com or visit www.dcr.virginia.gov.
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