Texas Crew

Program Year: 2021

Crew Partners: Texas Statewide Outreach Center and American Youthworks

Program Dates: 6/20 – 7/16

Leader: Sachiko Flores

Ages of Corps Member: 15 – 20


In Summer 2021, we had five students join our four week conservation program as part of our pilot program into the possibility of offering a conservation program for the deaf and hard of hearing youth in Texas.  Our youth, all High School aged, spent most of their time working on various projects around Austin and outside the city limits.  Many of their projects focused on improving the park systems and included removing invasive plants, rebuilding fences, litter clean up in the river systems and other tasks related to the beautification of our parks.  Additionally our crew was exposed to camping in the field, learning how to work as a team to ensure all their daily needs were met.  In the end our students went home with a rich experience that they will not forget.

Project Accomplishments

  • 6 first time corps members 
  • 2 acres of land improved
  • 2,180 feet of fence installed
  • 3 metal gates painted
  • 30 bollards and a cable system removed
  • 10,890 square feet of landscape beds cleaned
  • 1,320 feet of aquatic plant removed

CorpsTHAT Provided:


Crew Leader 

Provided qualified and experienced Deaf leader for the crew.  Supported any needed training for the crew leader before the start of the program. Training provided direct communication, leadership and educational training tailored to fit the needs of Deaf leaders and members as well as technical field training. 



Assisted in outreach and recruitment of students.  Provided interview and screening of applicants to ensure that participants understood the program and what was expected of them. 


Programmatic Support 

Trained staff and project contacts, debriefed with staff weekly, and was available to answer any questions or concerns. Provided ongoing education and knowledge share of the Deaf community and working with Deaf individuals for hearing partners.


Programmatic Logistics

Worked with project contacts to ensure the crew was able to complete projects, gathered tools and safety gear, coordinated transportation and camping gear and set up educational and enrichment activities during the program.


Crew Leader

Maryland | Texas

Amrin Shaikh joined our crew as the oldest member of the crew and came with great enthusiasm in learning. A few years ago, Amrin moved from India with limited access to any kind of language and education. Joining the crew with full communication access in ASL, and having the project contacts know how to interact and communicate visually with the crew gave Amrin a huge benefit of understanding the importance of conservation and the preservation of nature. Every week she gained hands-on project experience during hot summer, built confidence, and developed skills in leadership, code switching, conflict resolution, problem solving, and briefing the projects to the stakeholders.

As the youngest member, McKenna Brentham is well known for her terrific leadership and athletic skills at Texas School for the Deaf (TSD). Working outdoors has given her a better perspective on how mentally and physically challenging it is to stay safe and productive at work during the hot sunny weather in humid environment areas. It is nothing compared to her experience in playing softball. The crew has dug mulch piles into the wheelbarrows and added mulch to the trees at the approximately 2-acre city parks in Austin, Texas for two full weeks. At the end of the summer, she built closer relationships amongst crew members as she learned to communicate and use teamwork skills effectively so the projects can complete faster with great quality control. She completes the summer with a great satisfaction and enriching learning experience.

Contact us to learn more:

    We would like to thank our partners who made this crew possible:


    Statewide Outreach Center at Texas School of the Deaf

    American Youths Work

    Texas Conservation Corps

    Austin Parks Foundation

    The Trails Foundation

    JBL Historical Park

    San Antonio Mission National Historical Park

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