All posts by Kate Corwin

Looking for an Assistant Instructor

Green Works is looking for an assistant for its first year ECOS environmental education program. This is a paid contractor position. 

Qualifications – an interest in environmental and sustainability issues; good organization and communication skills; ability to roll with and respond to the unexpected; agile with technology; and willing to help set up and cleanup projects and experiments as needed.

Hours: – Wednesdays, 2-5pm, January-May 2017, following the school calendar. Location – East High School, 1924 Van Brunt.

If interested contact Kate Corwin: Thank you! 

Green Works awarded $1500 from Shawnee Mission East Junior Board!

lancerLast winter Mary and Kate met with Shawnee Mission East students who were researching Green Works for a program called Junior Board. In the spring we were in attendance at the high school when four different groups of students gave presentations on their chosen nonprofit. The students presenting on Green Works won second price! And that resulted in a $1500 cash gift we received last week during a Shawnee Mission East pep rally. Thanks so much to our student team – Iman, Natalie, Hazel, Jacob, Juliana and Owen. We appreciate your interest and your support of Green Works!   

Green Works wins Yelp Foundation Grant thanks to you!

We are excited to YF_20160114_Badge-01share that Green Works won a $3,000 grant from the Yelp Foundation, thanks to votes from community members in the Yelp Foundation Gives Local grant contest! Thank you so much to everyone who voted and supported us. This grant will go a long way towards our work educating urban youth and helping them transition from high school into post-secondary education and the workforce. #YFGivesLocal

A new storm drain manhole cover design for KCMO!

Our founder, Kate Corwin and Mike Buster had the winning design for the new KCMO storm drain manhole covers! The design includes rock art animals to remind people of the Native Americans and their respect for the environment.

We hope this new design helps people remember that whatever is on the ground ends up in our waters. And what ends up in our water ultimately ends up in us.


Yelp Help!

Exciting news — We’ve been selected to compete for a grant of up to $5k from the Yelp Foundation! #yfgiveslocal.

Community votes will determine the winner of the Yelp Foundation grant. You can show your support by voting for Green Works at this link, every day through Dec 15, 2015. Winners will be announced the week of January 4th, 2016.

We’re currently in second place. The extra $1,000 we would win if we can maintain our position would pay the costs for another urban youth to have a life-changing summer internship! It takes just a minute to vote. Thank you!

Speed Dating for Careers – can you help?

BatulaOur second year students will be taking part in a career panel discussion and speed dating session on Tuesday, December 1 around 6pm. We’ve invited people based on our students’ interests, but we still need a few more. If you work in this industry (or know someone who does) and would be willing to help our students by talking a bit about your career, please send an e-mail to Thanks! • Photographer or film industry • Family Therapist or counselor • Engineer • Architect • Fashion Designer • Fashion Journalist • Law Enforcement • Elementary Education

Tenesha cashes in on her summer internship

A couple of years ago, a soft-spoken young woman named Tenesha signed up for Green Works programming. On her application, Tenesha wrote that science was her least favorite subject and she admitted that the environmental topics were of little interest to her. But as the year progressed, she became more confident and actively engaged in group activities, sharing her ideas and thoughts. Tenesha now refers to the ECOS class as “fun, real-life science, not boring school science.” She adds, “Math and Science are still my least favorite subjects in school. But, I like them in real life.”

This past year Tenesha participated in our second-year Green Future program where she researched growing careers that aligned with her interests and ability. She created career plans for three careers that all involved working directly with people, in a customer-service type capacity. When the opportunity to place an intern at Nature’s Own Health Market came up, I knew it would be a perfect fit for Tenesha.

Tenesha and I went for the interview and Tenesha told Lottie and Jeff that while she was really excited to work at Nature’s Own, she wasn’t comfortable running the cash register. It wouldn’t be a problem though – there were plenty of other things to do like stocking shelves, handing out samples, helping customers and sacking.

Two weeks into her internship, I stopped by to take a photo of Tenesha. She had just finished creating a Fourth of July display. As soon as I told her I wanted to take a photo she jumped on the cash register and started checking out customers. Of course I was surprised and asked her about it. She just smiled and said “it turns out it isn’t so hard after all.” I was so proud!

Tenesha is doing better in school because of her involvement with Green Works, and she has gained confidence and new skills. Like her, nine other Green Works students have been placed in internships this summer. The experiences they gain change their lives. And there is data to back this up. Studies report that summer internships not only increase academic performance, but improve future job success and earnings for up to 15 years after high school graduation.

In fact, we’ve just found out that Tenesha has been offered a regular part-time job with Nature’s Own! So stop by Nature’s Own and congratulate her.