AmeriCorps Volunteers Leave Sacramento to Help Across the Country

SACRAMENTO -- Bri Dion is getting ready to lead her team.

Bags are packed and the trunks are loaded.

"We are going to Middletown, California. We are going to be working with North Coast Opportunity and Hope City and we are going to be doing long disaster recover from some wildfires," Dion said.

Dion's team is from AmeriCorps, a federal program that takes young adults around the country to complete service projects. Her team is only going about two hours away from Sacramento.

The distance is small but the job is big. They will be rebuilding homes for 14 families who have spent years in trailers, waiting for help.

"It's like absolutely devastating, everything that they have to go through and everything that they've experienced," Dion said. "It's heartbreaking but the program that we are in is super rewarding being able to help them restart their lives."

Each AmeriCorps volunteer must go on three service projects in 10 months. The first trip is about six weeks long. They come back to Sacramento, their home base, for one week. After that, it's back on the road.

Just a few weeks ago, team leader Kevin Moncada was in Puerto Rico with his group to distribute supplies to those in need after Hurricane Maria devastated the island. Monday morning, he started a 14-hour drive to Butte, Montana.

"We want different experiences and this program really does that very well," Moncada said. "It throws us in different environments and that's the whole point about it."

Whether it's building homes for wildfire victims in California, giving food to those in need in Puerto Rico, or helping the underserved youth in Montana, these teams are ready to give their time to give a hand to others.