Concord Carpenter, Dewalt, Stanley and Milwaukee Volunteer To Help Build America
Concord Carpenter, Dewalt, Stanley and Milwaukee Help Build America
On my website, Concord Carpenter, I spend a lot of time writing articles to help contractor’s become better leaders and more professional within their trade. We also try to give back to the community when we can. So it should no surprise that I jumped on the opportunity to help “Build America” build leaders of tomorrow by serving people with disabilities today!
The crew at Concord Carpenter wanted to part of something bigger than ourselves so we volunteered to instruct the Build America Team on tool usage and tool safety. This is an intensive 3-day program that will teach these 21 young men how to safely use, and operate power tools, and how to build some of the projects they will be encountering.
Red more on Build America
The “Build America” program is a team of 21 recent, college graduates who travel the country, for 6-weeks, visiting camps and parks rebuilding and building accessible recreation for people with disabilities. During these six weeks, the team, will build accessible fishing piers, nature trails, climbing walls, wheel chair ramps and many other amenities providing opportunities for campers to experience everything summer camp has to offer.
Throughout the summer, the team will log over 4,000 man hours, save camps and communities thousands of dollars in labor and materials and positively impact the lives of thousands of people with disabilities.
This year, in June, the team will travel from New Hampshire to Georgia.
Part of being involved in a project bigger than ourselves means getting some good guys to work with you. So in addition to this the 3-day session we reached out to DEWALT, MILWAUKEE and STANLEY and asked them to help out.
The Push America staff and Build America coordinators are VERY budget conscience to maximize their impact on the community, so needless to say they were not buying the highest quality of tools, as each tool purchase meant less resources focused on improving the lives of people with disabilities. Our friends at DEWALT, MILWAUKEE, and STANLEY totally stepped in or rather stepped-up as leaders in their industries to allow an organization like Push America to spend their time, effort, and money where it counts.
To date we have have secured over $10,000 worth of tool donations for the team this year, and for years to come. The generosity and leadership of these three companies will impact the lives of campers with disabilities across the country as their drills, saws, and hand tools build, repair, and maintain camp amenities for people with disabilities.
From the Push America / Build America Staff and us here at ACC we are truly grateful and humbled by your gifts! Thanks DEWALT, MILWAUKEE, and STANLEY!
The Concord Carpenter team will not be traveling with these youths but we do have a donation page and would appreciate if you would consider donating to this worthwhile cause.
Concord Carpenter’s Build America Ambassador
by Nick Julian
My name is Nick Julian and this summer I will have the awesome pleasure of being a contributor to AConcordCarpenter.com while working on the 2014 Build America team!
Before I go on about this “wicked cool” opportunity, I want to introduce myself a little bit.
I’m a 23 year old “kid” currently living and working in Bedford, MA. I was born in Brooklyn, NY and was raised in New Jersey, but have no fear, I was raised by a father who’s favorite baseball player was Carl Yazstremski, so I am in fact a proud member of Red Sox Nation.
Rumor has it, Rob (AKA Concord Carpenter) saw, and almost caught, Carl’s 400th home-run.
Who is This Nick Julian Kid?
As far as my academic background is concerned, I graduated high school in Land O’ Lakes, Florida (that’s actually not where the butter comes from) and attended UMass Amherst for a year, having to leave because it got pretty expensive, pretty quickly. Wanting to complete another year of coursework, I attended Middlesex Community College (MCC) right here in Bedford. I graduated last January, as a Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society Member, a Commonwealth Honors student, and as a member of the “50 Finest” graduates of the Class of 2013.
I’m a fairly smart and hard-working guy and am a first-generation American, which is a pretty cool fun fact, with both of my parents coming from the sunny island nation and home of steel pan and Angostura bitters, Trinidad and Tobago (both were born in Trinidad and immigrated to the U.S. when they were young).
Since graduating college, I’ve been juggling a job at the local Subway restaurant and an internship at the State House. Talk about a change of scenery! I consider myself to be a politically-involved person, but unlike some, I can turn that switch on and off. So rest assured, that switch will be “off” on my ACC blog posts.
I have been incredibly fortunate this past year to get a job, an internship in government where I’ve met everyone from a constituent to foreign diplomats, had the ability to cheer on runners at the Boston Marathon, take a tour of Fenway and see the World Series Trophies in person, the list goes on and on. But more importantly, I will be able to do something I’ve wanted to do since I joined a fraternity in the first semester of my Freshman year at UMass Amherst in 2010.
Enter Pi Kappa Phi and Build America
In 2010, I joined Pi Kappa Phi Fraternity because the people I met were really talented caring guys who I could saw myself becoming lifelong friends with. These guys are the type of friends who I could turn to for any support or encouragement and they add tremendous value to my life. Additionally, I really liked the fact that Pi Kappa Phi developed its own philanthropic organization called Push America.
Push America’s Mission
Push America’s mission of “building leaders of tomorrow by helping people with disabilities today” was incredibly inspiring especially for someone like me who considers public service to be my calling.
In reading more about Pi Kappa Phi and Push America, I came across the annual summer events they hold to raise awareness for people with disabilities.
These events are:
Journey of Hope:
A bike ride across the nation. (Assistant Editor Phil Benevides participated in this event in 2008)
Gear Up Florida:
A bike ride across the state of Florida
A cross-country journey of constructing accessible structures at summer camps that serve people with disabilities.
Build America (BAM) really caught my eye because, I don’t know about you, but when I make something I get a ton of self-satisfaction. I also want to know how to construct other projects, and make them well enough to last for a long time. I also wanted to have a tangible impact on my community, by building something that could last for generations.
I think building structures (like a patio, bookcase, etc.) is an incredibly important skill that many people my age either haven’t used frequently or lack completely. I am of the second camp. I know nothing about construction, carpentry or its details, but I am willing to learn and I know you all are too, which is awesome!
So it is with great excitement that I say that this summer I have the opportunity to participate as a team member of Build America 2014. I am eager to build accessible structures for people with disabilities, meet the people we are helping, visit various communities across the country, and get to share this incredible experience with all of you! And when I say share, I mean live tweets, video footage, blog posts, tool demonstrations, everything’s on the table, so you’ll just have to stay tuned!
Joining the Build America Team
There several reasons I wanted to join this year’s BAM team, the main impulse was the “Boston Strong” movement. Over the past year, Boston, and really the Commonwealth, has seen how our community can come together to support those who faced incomprehensible odds on their “rugged roads” to recover from their injuries, both physical and mental. In the most recent marathon, we saw how those runners impacted by the bombings overcame their “disability” and turned it into a worldwide display of their abilities and the strength that they possessed.
Coincidentally, this year’s Build America event starts in Boston! Making it a fantastic opportunity to showcase the importance of caring about accessibility, an issue that affects over 54 million Americans everyday. This simple fact has grown my inspiration to one of sharing hope, friendship, opportunity, and social change nationwide.
Help Nick Enter the Build America Event
I am pledging to raise $4,000 for this event and have been inspired by, fraternity brother and former Push America participant, Phil Benevides. Phil is a member of the Concord Carpenter crew and told me about this incredible opportunity to share my journey with you.
Nicks donation page:
Concord Carpenter and Build America
This year the BAM team is off to an incredible start, and we haven’t even had orientation yet! The Concord Carpenter Crew, led by Rob Robillard, agreed to train the BAM team members in tool safety and usage. They’ll be teaching me things like which end of the hammer to use to install a temporary shoring wall when removing a wall, or how to cut joists for a wheel chair ramp.
Rob also reached out to his tool manufacturer friends and was able to get our BAM team equipped with professional quality tools that will last for years and support future BAM teams! You might just need to call us “Batman” because we’ll have so many new tools for fighting crime…I mean, building accessible structures.
Our tool partners, DeWalt and Milwaukee, joined forces to help Build America help others. The tool and building instruction coupled with the massive tool donation is shaping up to make this the best BAM program in its 11-year history.
I am confident that Rob, Phil, and the ACC Crew will help our Build America team become proficient in construction, site safety, terminology, techniques, tool handling, and in becoming the best carpenters we can be so that we can actively promote accessibility and share this gift with those who need it most: people with disabilities who want to be defined by their abilities and not their disabilities.
In closing, I am wicked excited to share with you everything that we’re doing on this journey. It’s going to be an incredible experience!
Let the journey of a lifetime begin!
~ Nick J.