This year I have had the honor of serving as an AmeriCorps Volunteer in Service to America — VISTA — alleviating poverty in Montana. My position has been with the S.A.V.E. Foundation in Helena. I have had the opportunity to build community through partnerships and engagements in public transit and accessible biking and walking. In this role, I experienced how essential these aspects are to everyone’s ability to be part of a healthy community, not just those with the greatest needs who VISTAs serve most.
My experience has revealed how public transportation is essential in empowering our growing senior population to age-in-place, as they become unable to drive. As Montana continues to grow, transit will be helpful for spending less time in traffic and more in the mountains.
I have seen that bikes are not just for the fearless and the brave cyclists, but also as means of genuine transportation for children to get to school and peoples’ ability to stay fit.
I’d like to thank this community and all the VISTAs serving across the state. I encourage any recent college graduate to spend a year serving America, especially in Montana. Learn about my experience at savemobile.org.