By: Becca Smith
September 20th was CPA Day of Service, sponsored by NCACPA. All CPAs in North Carolina were encouraged to volunteer for a community organization of their choice (you could work as a group or as individuals) and you could commit the whole day or just a few hours volunteering. We participated last year in 2012 at Life Experiences in Cary and had a great time. This year we went to The Corral Riding Academy. The Corral is a non-profit that works with at-risk teenage girls by pairing them with horses rescued from their unsafe environment.
The Corral—Girls learn how to care for horses, engage with the horses through chores and “life on the farm,” and also get help with schoolwork, tutoring, and successful life skills. I love The Corral and have been personally involved with them over the past few years. I believe in the work they are doing; I enjoy their staff; their location is great (close to our house); and I always enjoy being on the farm with the horses.
Becca mending the fence—Marinna Jasso, Volunteer Coordinator at The Corral, worked with me a few weeks in advance on planning our Day of Service activity. On Friday morning, Alicia, Cam, Blake, and I showed up at The Corral farm for a half-day of volunteering. Our first project was to work on a fence between Field 1 and Field 2 by securing the wire fence into place on the stakes.
Blake & Cam Building Fencing—It started to rain while we were working, but Marinna brought us some ponchos and we kept on fixing the fence. Our next project was to build a temporary pasture near Field 3 so the horses could have some new grassy areas to graze. This took a bit of coordination and some use of farm/fencing equipment that can be a little foreign to a group of ‘office workers’. But we had fun and learned a lot about taking care of a farm & horses! The horses were beautiful and were very friendly—they came right up to us and wanted lots of attention!
Alicia Digging Soil Samples—Our final project was to take soil samples from three of the fields and box them for testing at NC State. This required us to dig three holes on each field, mix the soil together, and box it up for the sampling. Not such an easy job when parts of the field had really hard ground! NCACPA provided nice green Day of Service t-shirts for everyone to wear. They also held a photo contest again this year and the winner will be on the front of their magazine. While we didn’t win last year, we did make it into the magazine. This year though, we are hoping to win and be on the front cover! Below are the two pictures we’ve submitted for the contest…what do you think?? Winner Winner right!?!?
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Becca Smith was born in Bristol, TN and moved to Greenville, NC with her family in 1993. She attended East Carolina University where she proudly served the school as an ECU Ambassador for 4 years and received the distinguished Robert H. Wright Alumni Leadership Award in 2003. Becca graduated Magna Cum Laude with her Bachelor of Science in Hospitality and Tourism in 2003 and went on to earn her Master of Business Administration in 2004, also from East Carolina University. She was hired at Smith & Smith, CP,A in the Fall of 2004 as the Director of Marketing (she was the first full-time employee)and uses her marketing skills to promote clients through her blog (www.beccasblog.com) and other networks. She currently serves as the Vice Chair for Member Business Services to the Cary Chamber of Commerce and as Club President for the Cary-Kildaire Rotary Club. Becca is married to Blake (partner at Smith & Smith, CPA) and during her spare time she enjoys photography, fashion news, and spending time with her family.