As one of Groundwork Lawrence’s newest team members as an intern from Merrimack College, I have learned that the organization wastes little time in fully embracing you into the Groundwork family, including diving right into their extensive programming. My name is Paige Sorensen and I am a junior at Merrimack College pursuing an Environmental Studies & Sustainability degree. I began my work with GWL this September, and since then have actively participated in many different programs, worked with numerous GWL employees, and ultimately have felt at home when I walk through the doors. Although it is challenging to choose a favorite area of Groundwork, it is safe to say that I have enjoyed working at Costello Urban Farm above all else – so much so that I decided to bring the Merrimack Women’s Ice Hockey Team to share in two service days.
As a member of the team myself, I understand the dynamic that goes into being a contributing member and the work ethic that is required of each individual. On Sunday, October 15th, ten members of our team brought that exact mentality to Costello. Even though many women on the team had never held a garden tool before stepping foot into the farm that sunny morning, they all left with the same sense of accomplishment, appreciation, and acceptance that I feel at Groundwork on a daily basis. That morning, we assisted the Groundwork team in harvesting over sixty pounds of cherry tomatoes and onions and prepared the field for winter. We removed and composted the tomato plants along with the invading weeds. Finally, we cleared the field of tomato stakes, twine, and debris.
The response from the Merrimack Women’s Hockey Team was incredible. Everyone thoroughly enjoyed getting out of our comfort zones and contributing to something larger than ourselves in order to assist the Groundwork Lawrence team with much-needed work. Luckily, the remaining half of the team had a service day on October 29th and was able to experience similar feelings of value while beginning to understand the necessity for community involvement and service. I am very appreciative to work in an environment where the family atmosphere is extended to include my other family, and, that they both learned something from one another that day.