I first became involved with River Watch during high school when a friend invited me to join a program that not only picked us up after school and fed us, but also paid us to explore the outdoors. It was an irresistible offer, and my interest in the organization quickly grew beyond being just a student participant. Eventually, I became the first student representative on the Board of Directors and served until I graduated high school.
After graduating from Reagan High School (now Northeast H.S.), I worked as an AYRW program intern for two summers while pursuing my studies in business administration at The University of Texas at Austin. While in college I became deeply involved with the immigrant community and wanted to support them.
As a Dreamer myself, I proudly helped to organize DACA clinics offering pro-bono assistance to eligible individuals seeking to apply for the DACA program. My passion for giving back continued to grow as I worked as the Firm Administrator at an immigration law firm, where I was for the past seven years. I also continued to be involved with River Watch, serving as a board member again, though now as a professional rather than as a student.
AYRW holds a special place in my heart because it ignited my passion for the outdoors and the different ways it can be enjoyed. Despite having lived in Austin for about two decades, my family and I were unaware of some of the natural locations I discovered through River Watch. Like many of our students, I had the privilege and joy of experiencing various outdoor activities for the first time through this program.
Now, as the new Co-Executive Director at Austin Youth River Watch, I am thrilled to have the opportunity to support our dedicated staff members in transforming the lives of students and taking our organization to new heights.
If you would like to connect with AYRW, please feel free to email the Co-EDs at firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com. We would be more than happy to discuss any potential opportunities to support something that has been so meaningful to the Austin community and has helped so many youth experience the natural spaces that Austin and the surrounding areas have to offer.