This week we are excited to begin introducing you to our three, new full-rime, year long AmeriCorps Vista members.
First up we have Shaina Opperman.
Shaina, a native of South Lyons, MI decided to join AmeriCorps after COVID-19 ended her social research project at the University of Michigan.
“For the past two years since finishing undergrad at MSU, I’ve been doing social research at U-M about people’s perceptions toward the concept of diverting human urine from the waste stream for re-use as fertilizer. That sounds like a highly specific—and perhaps unusual—kind of project, but in a lot of ways I feel it connects naturally to the things I’ll be doing here—building trusting relationships, sharing knowledge, staying accountable to people’s concerns, and co-creating solutions. While I’m serving with AmeriCorps, I’ll have the opportunity to continue working through the kinds of social questions that have been on my mind a lot lately. So as a personal next step I think AmeriCorps just fits.”
Since joining the team, Shaina has been really drawn to the generosity of spirit embodied by everyone in Three Rivers as well as the *cino community’s commitment to creative collaboration. She especially loves how *cino pushes ourselves to self-reflect and let experience and community input guide us toward ways to live together more responsibly. What *cino does has evolved through many different people continuously working on creating stronger community partnerships. She sees the Saturday market as an example of this. “The market works through a lot of people coming together, including our visitors, and it would never exist in exactly the same way if it had been created in a different place or emerged from another group of people. I really enjoy seeing these unique things we create together, so I view my contribution to this team with a lot of gratitude and curious anticipation.”
When she’s not working, Shaina enjoys long walks in nature, keeping the community house cookie jar full to the brim with baked goods, and working her way through her “to-read” list.
We are thrilled to have her with us for the year.
Stop by the market soon and say hi to her and the rest of the *cinocrew.