By Bobby Church, AmeriCorps member serving on the Advent International team with Condon K-7 School
One of the things that I was most excited for when I was accepted to City Year was receiving my red jacket. All through Basic Training Academy (BTA) whenever my team and I shared what we were looking forward to, whether it was seeing our school or meeting our students, I always shared that I was excited to receive my red jacket and uniform. Though I had worn different uniforms for various jobs before, this was the first time I received a uniform that I felt truly proud to wear. For me the red jacket meant more than just working for any ordinary job to earn money, it meant working for a cause greater than myself. It meant I would give myself and all that I had to help the students I serve reach their full potential as students and help them overcome whatever obstacles they may face in the process.
This is the cause that I am reminded of every day when I put on my jacket and head to the Condon K-7 school where I serve. Within my first few months of service, I have quickly come to learn that this is also what the jacket means to the communities we serve. During BTA I first heard my Impact Manager and Team Leader tell stories of people thanking them for their service. I thought these were rare occasions that hardly ever happened. But I have personally lost count over the amount of times I’ve been stopped on my way to and from my school by people wanting to thank me and my team. I’ve learned that City Year plays an essential role in our schools and their communities. Putting on my jacket every morning, I feel quite humbled by these communities and tremendously proud to serve them, my school, and my students.