The main campus at Norris is almost 900 acres of trees, wooded areas, ponds, etc., and we are proud we can offer this space to the youth that reside here. We try to get the youth involved in everything we do on campus as it provides them an opportunity to learn a new skill, understand they are part of a “community” and it keeps them busy and productive.
In the Spring and Summer months, Norris really comes alive! The trees are sprouting their buds, the flowers are soaking up the rain and the youth are cleaning up for spring. On Earth Day, one of our Residential Care Specialists, T’Anna Holst, led a group of youth around the pond and Pavilion, picking up the debris that tends to collect during the snowy months. They were surprised how quickly the small pieces of trash added up to two large bags of garbage. Once it was thrown away, the youth were more excited about the warm weather rolling in now that they have a clean pond to swim in.
Other youth prepared for spring with a garden behind one of the Residential Halls. Our youth spent hours picking out overgrown grass, digging up old buried tarp, and turning up the soil in preparation for peppers, green beans and zucchini. One youth took it upon himself to build a fence by weaving thorny vines in and out of sticks hammered into the ground to keep the bunnies out of the vegetables.
In between football games and making s’mores on the fire, youth are taking it upon themselves to help keep Norris clean and ready for spring. We appreciate that the Norris youth and staff take so much pride in living and working here. It makes for a beautiful place to come to work each day!