New VISTA learns to “Live United”
United Way of King County welcomes an AmeriCorps VISTA
My name is Moira Ohl and I was hired as the UWKC Economic Stability Coordinator VISTA. Basically, being a VISTA means that you are expected to do a lot of work in not a lot of time, have outstanding networking opportunities, build capacity for your organization, and have a whole lot of fun making friends while positively impacting your community.
Something humbling about this opportunity is realizing that in order to be in the situation to “volunteer” a year of service to your community, you usually are coming from a somewhat privileged position. I pounced on this opportunity because I realized, “Hey, I might not have another year of my life when I am flexible with my time, able to explore my interests, and have the ability to learn about aspects of my own community that I may not understand yet.”
A fellow VISTA at UWKC warned me that a year flies by and I intend on making the absolute most of my time here. I will never be in this position again or perhaps even in this region again! I graduated from Seattle University after transferring from Creighton University in Omaha, NE, and that transition has provided me with a broad spectrum of skills, life experiences, and insights into different geographical cultures and mindsets. Having lived most of my life in Loveland, CO, I was able to enjoy a comfortable and peachy upbringing. But, I have experienced other communities that struggle and do not have much of a support system working to stop the causes of problems instead of focusing on solutions afterwards. There is nothing cooler, in my opinion, than the work UWKC does for the place I now call home, and I truly want to help them accomplish their goals as much as I am able to.
Check out the work VISTA’s are doing in different communities! I am only one week in but I already highly recommend this experience to ANYONE that has a desire to serve, learn, and grow.