Since 2006, T-Mobile Huddle Up has engaged over 8,850 employee volunteers, transformed nearly 58 afterschool facilities and touched the lives of more than 52,000 youth. Today, T-Molbile partnered with our very own City Year Care Force team to engage over 150 volunteers in East New York, Brooklyn. Hosting our service was Groundwork, a youth and community development organization that City Year New York proudly partners with during afterschool. Volunteers completed over 20 projects ranging from mural paintings, constructing benches, designing a soundproof music room, and building bookshelves and planter boxes. To see the pictures from the day, check them out here!
The service that T-Mobile volunteers provided to this community is best reflected in the interview I had with Alyssa Barzey, Youth Program Team Leader at Groundwork and City Year New York alumna. Alyssa is fresh off the PS 149 City Year team and I am excited to have her as our first Alumni Spotlight of the year!
Communications (C): Describe a service day in 3 words:
Alyssa (A): Long, fun, and rewarding.
C: What will the service that T-Mobile Huddle Up and Care Force is providing to Groundwork mean to you and the students you work with?
A: The service means a lot to me because it will inspire Groundwork’s youth. Also I’ve heard from the teenagers [at] Groundwork, and it means a lot to them because they had a part in designing one of the rooms.
C: What’s your history with the Groundwork?
A: I started working with Groundwork Inc. in the spring of 2009 as a team leader for their after-school program at P.S. 292. Currently, this is my 3rd summer with Groundwork.
C: What made you apply for City Year?
A: A former corps member told me I should apply and said it was a great program. I did not apply right away but my cousin joined and talked about how much she loved it, so I did my research and decided it was a program I would like to be a part of.
C: How has working for City Year prepared you for the work you continue to do?
A: In City Year I learned how to split up work within a team so everyone is included. Also leadership is less intimidating to me now and that experience has helped me with my students and team this summer.
C: If City Year could be any reality TV show, which one would it be and why?
A: “The Real World” because City Year gathers people from different areas in the United States with different backgrounds and place them in one school where they spend most of their day working together. There are ups, downs, and some hard work involved but it was worth it.
C: What is your funniest moment with a student?
A: A few days before my birthday a 2nd grade student told me she was going to throw me a surprise birthday party. She also told me not to tell anyone.
C: Be honest, what’s your favorite PT move?
A: Power Lunges! I don’t think I will ever forget that one.
C: Describe your City Year experience in one word.
C: What are your future professional goals?
A: I would like to pursue a career in education and become a teacher.
We wish you the best of luck, Alyssa! We’re honored to have you as a City Year Leader for Life! And thank you to T-Mobile, Groundwork, and City Year Care Force for providing us the opportunity to come together for a powerful day of service!