Meet Damontre.

Corpsmember Damontre H. hit the ground running when he joined the LA Corps, helping to plant over 750 trees across the community with the LA Mayor’s Million Trees Program.

He quickly earned his OSHA 10 and First Aid/CPR certifications as a Corpsmember. Not long after, he enrolled in the Corps’ Driver’s Education Program, received behind the wheel training, and earned his driver’s license.

In the fall, Damontre joined the site’s leadership council as a liaison between Corpsmembers and staff. He has also served as a driver and crew leader, working on the City Plants project and being responsible for delivering free trees to local residents. Most recently, he’s been participating in a three-and-a-half week seminar—the PLACE Program, delivered by Los Angeles County and WERC—a workplace training that connects Corpsmembers and other prospective employees with specialized education to prepare for grounds maintenance and custodial position openings with the county.

Prior to joining the Corps, I did not have a sense of community even in the neighborhood that I grew up in for the last 20 years. I felt as if I was taking from my community only to benefit myself. Before, I would not give much thought to the environment or the benefits that it provides to people. Now I feel as if I’m giving back and it makes me see everything in a more optimistic light. Every time that I deliver a tree, plant a tree or cut concrete, I can see that I am doing a positive thing and improving the community, not only for myself but for the people that live there.

“Every day I am thankful that the LA Corps gave me a fair chance to start a new life!”

Damontre, who has faced numerous challenges throughout his life, dreams of giving back to other at-risk youth in the future, so that they don’t make the same mistakes he has made in the past.

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