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Illinois Conservation Corps. In June of 2011, Governor Pat Quinn announced the Illinois Conservation Corps, a statewide effort managed by the Illinois.

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Presentation on theme: "Illinois Conservation Corps. In June of 2011, Governor Pat Quinn announced the Illinois Conservation Corps, a statewide effort managed by the Illinois."— Presentation transcript:

1 Illinois Conservation Corps

2 In June of 2011, Governor Pat Quinn announced the Illinois Conservation Corps, a statewide effort managed by the Illinois Department of Natural Resources, designed to put young people to work this summer. The Illinois Jobs and Training Program has two parts: the Illinois Youth Recreation Corps and the Illinois Conservation Corps. Additionally, IDNR’s Office of Community Outreach coordinated the Urban Collegiate Conservation Internship Program. Overview

3 Illinois Youth Recreation Corps The Illinois Youth Recreation Corps is a grant program to help not-for-profit entities and units of local government employ 16-19 year-olds for up to 60 days over the summer. Grants funded wages for jobs that provide recreational opportunities in areas including (but not limited to) physical activity, arts, and learning. The types of organizations involved in the 2011 IYRC were social service, recreational, community empowering, career advancement, religious, cultural awareness, youth monitoring, and educational agencies. The agencies spanned all of Chicagoland and are well recognized in their respective communities as non-for-profits with missions of molding youth for advancement in their present circumstances and future endeavors. Many of the youth had transformational experiences in their development as people. Youth were able to support their families, buy school supplies, pay tuitions, buy groceries, prepare for upcoming the academic school year, earn first time paychecks, and be overall productive in society.

4 “The youth did an excellent job. Many residents of the community commended the youth on the wonderful job they did … Each youth not only gained income but learned new skills including growing a garden, the importance of land preservation, landscaping, working as a team, and time management.” – Vision Restoration “In doing this we try to educate our guys to respect and care for their neighborhood as well as to become an example for all those who live here.” – Peace Corner Neighborhood clean up through Peace Corner Trash removal in Maywood through Vision Restoration

5 Patrick Grove, Jaylen Marks, and Kevin Brown perform restoration work and assist at events through the Rockford Park District

6 “I can't even begin to tell you how much this program has meant to these young people… seven of the youth were intent on dropping out of high school or had already done so.. because of the leverage of this summer job program, and the influence we now have in their lives, six are back in school and the seventh is going to Job Corp. Thanks for everything and words cannot express my appreciation for this program and the difference it has made in the city of Harvey and on those employed through this grant!” – Harvey Park District Park and playground maintenance in the City of Harvey

7 Andrew Brazee helped prepare a site for replanting after several declining spruce trees had been removed with the Peoria Park District. Clearing brush and paving a path for a trail that will be located in Easton Park, 840 E. Washington Street in West Chicago.

8 “This program served as a social blessing for the kids and allowed them to be expressive through the arts…It could become routine and would help support families, build confidence, and allow for youth to live a more peaceful life.” – Alternative Village IYRC participants at Alternative Village Association were engaged in a multitude of activities, ranging from gardening and exterior design to office work and resume building activities.

9 “This program creates room for youth to learn about themselves and help in community and personal development. We highly encourage the state to continue this next year.” – God’s Battle Axe Prayer Ministry International Youth engaged in various activities through God’s Battle Axe Prayer Ministry International

10 IYRC participants learn CPR and first aid training at Lincoln United Methodist Church. Performing a play for members of the community and Alderman Danny Solis. “This program was able to provide youth with valuable community outreach experience and equip them with the necessary skills to pursue health careers.. We would like to expand and have even more youth involved.” – Centro Sin Fronteras

11 Illinois Conservation Corps The Illinois Conservation Corps is a six-month employment opportunity for people between the ages of 18-25. Participants will work on public lands owned or leased by the IDNR. Workers in this program assist State Park staff to maintain buildings and grounds, pick up litter, mow, cut weeds, remove brush, patch concrete and asphalt road surfaces, issue camping permits and register state park campers. Additionally, they may assist with security and fire patrol, trail building, tool/equipment maintenance, painting and repair. They may also assist in the care and propagation of birds, clean bird pens, transport game to laying houses or breeding areas at DNR’s three game farms. Workers may also operate hunter check stations and perform the duties associated with the maintenance of buildings and grounds as identified above.


13 Urban Collegiate Conservation Internship IDNR’s Office of Community Outreach developed this work force development internship through which 10 Chicago- area college students participated. Interns received the opportunity to work with mentors, explore a variety of natural resource career opportunities, and enhance their career portfolios. Interns were also given the opportunity to attend meetings, shadow conservation police officers, and work with inner- city youth through Urban Fishing Clinics and Leave No Child Inside programs, helping them to appreciate nature through activities.

14 “The passion DNR staff have for Illinois and our natural resources is contagious and some of their finest work takes place when they’re called upon to mentor young people.” – Marc Miller, Director Urban Conservation interns, DNR staff, and Governor Pat Quinn

15 Working with fisheries biologists, interns Alyssa Cooke and Joanna Johnson assessed fish populations in northeastern Illinois. “This internship has been absolutely wonderful. I feel like I have taken an entire semester's worth of classes, because I have learned so much this summer. Before I started interning for the IDNR, I had very little interest in plant biology because I thought it was pretty boring and that only animal biology was interesting. This internship has sparked an interest for me in plant biology and I appreciate nature and land so much more now.” – Alyssa Cooke, UIC biological science major

16 Alyssa Cooke enjoys her time spent with wildlife Rubi Rosa and Becca Filippini assist in a turtle trapping project

17 Office of Resource Conservation Natural Heritage : Pesticide Training & Testing, Exotic and Invasive species control, Bird survey. Partnering and working with local groups – Green Corp Chicago/Hegewisch Marsh and Various work days at other locations: Chain O’ Lakes, Des Plaines Conservation Area, Illinois Beach and Wolf Road Prairie. Wildlife: Goosebanding, Turtle trapping and herbicide application Fisheries: DNA sampling and Electro Fishing (Asian Carp) Forestry: Exotic and Invasive herbicide and removal at Red Wing Slough and Chain O’ Lakes.

18 Youth Conservation Congress 2011 The Illinois Department of Natural Resources will host its second annual Youth Conservation Congress at Starved Rock on November 11 and 12. Participation is free and open to youth groups that express an interest in conservation programming. The conference will consist of two days; Day 1 will be the stewardship and recreation day. Participants will sign up to participate in various activities…trail upkeep, beaver dam removal, fishing, bird watching, archery, tree and plant identification, etc. Day 2 of the conference will have 4 Circuits: Resource Conservation, Recreation, Stewardship and Innovation & Sustainability. The Youth Conservation Congress will not only provide a forum for youth to showcase conservation related activities of the organization they are representing, but will also allow them to experience stewardship and recreation opportunities. Conservation organizations will have an opportunity to present research, projects, and initiatives and non-traditional organizations will have an opportunity to network and acquire knowledge. Harvest for the World!


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