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Photo: Rosy Chavez

After a life-threatening car accident, Rosy Chavez was motivated to try something new and make every second count. Without knowing anything about the Montana Conservation Corps, Rosy was determined to tackle a new challenge outdoors.

Your donations to the Glacier Conservancy continue to provide life-changing opportunities for veterans, local tribal members, and youth, just like Rosy. Keep reading to learn how Rosy was able to translate her knowledge and passion for the environment into valuable work experience that provides a lasting benefit to Glacier National Park.

In Rosy’s Words

After my life-threatening accident, I experienced so much trauma. I learned to live a lot more, making every second worth it. I did not let this accident define me or make me afraid. I started stepping outside my comfort zone and taking risks. A life-changing experience turned into a beautiful thing and opened many doors.

 

I had the interest in joining the Piikani Lands Crew because I picked myself up by believing I could do anything and everything. I had motivation and sought challenges to try new things I had never done that were out of my comfort zone. Without knowing anything about conservation corps, I asked to interview in hopes to challenge my abilities if I got the position. My little curious self saw it as being adventurous and taking the risk to complete laborious projects every day in any weather.

The Piikani Lands Crew fuels reduction team poses for a photo in the forest

Photo: Rosy Chavez

I did many things serving with MCC that I enjoyed. What brought me a lot of excitement was doing maintenance on the Continental Divide Trail for 10 days straight, camping outdoors during those long periods of hitches, hiking up to 12 miles a day carrying tools in and out of work areas, and building beaver mimicry dams that help the Blackfeet Nation adapt to climate change by increasing surface and groundwater storage. I took in a lot of fresh air, and saw beautiful scenery everywhere we went. I had a lot of moments to really appreciate the fact that this is only 12 miles away from home.

The Piikani Lands Crew building a beaver dam in East Glacier

Photo: Rosy Chavez

I strongly think the Piikani Lands Crew is important. It gives us the chance to work on our ancestral lands, and the experience engages native youth and young adults in meaningful conservation projects on native lands.

 

We regard nature with deep respect in our traditions and beliefs, and we have a strong sense of place and belonging. Not only are we doing what is best for our community, but we are building bonds with each other too.

 

After being awarded the 2020 Corps Member of the Year, I plan to use this to encourage everyone else in my community to have this excitement that I feel. I always put in 110% in everything I do. Feeling the pride I have within myself goes a long way. My experience on the Piikani Lands Crew led me to the opportunity to work on the trails crew with Glacier. MCC started my road to a successful life of service doing things to better our ancestral lands.

National Corps Member of the Year

Every year, The Corps Network honors a select group of exceptional corps members at their National Conference in Washington, DC. Rosy was awarded this prestigous honor in 2020.

The “Corpsmembers of the Year” are role models; according to The Corps Network, “they exhibit outstanding leadership skills and demonstrate an earnest commitment to service and civic engagement. Their personal stories and accomplishments are an inspiration to corps members nationwide.”

Watch the video below to see Rosy’s emotional speech as she reflects on being named the 2020 Corpsmember of the Year.

A still image of Rosa-Linda Chavez giving a speech as a 2020 Corpsmember of the Year from Montana Conservation Corps

Video: The Corps Network

Your Support Makes A Difference

This project and many other critical projects would not be possible without your donations to the Glacier Conservancy.

Watch the video below to learn about the Glacier Conservancy’s special partnership with Montana Conservation Corps.

Learn more about how your support is making other education projects possible in Glacier National Park!

A video still of a Montana Conservation Corps crew hard at work in Glacier National Park