Project Saturday is a co-created initiative in service to designing a process to foster collaborative learning for high school and college youth interning at the EcoCenter at Heron's Head Park, a division of Bay.Org.

Team: Laura Sanford & Yini Nie
Community Partner: Bay.Org
Class: Social Lab


The EcoCenter is an off-the-grid fully sustainable green building and educational center open to the public at Heron's Head Park in Bayview/Hunter's Point, San Francisco.

In summer 2017, the EcoCenter had employed 8 interns as part of a Community Challenge Grant - the largest group since starting the program. The staff was worried about the interns' abilities to work as a team, hold meetings, and collaborate with such a large group. Laura and Yini designed and facilitated 4 workshops during the summer internship program in 2017 and later created a detailed toolkit to integrate collaborative learning processes in future programming.



The workshops were designed to help the interns work collaboratively and included mentorship so that they could successfully finish their final summer project: restoring the butterfly meadow.

The topics of the workshops were:

  • Non-Violent Communication

  • Research and Synthesis

  • Radical Collaboration

  • Public Speaking


Measuring Impact

The team invested in the interns' psychological capital by building up their confidence through communication and collaboration and in their knowledge capital through giving them skills and methods of teamwork and project management.

The impact was measured by

  • feedback through conversation at the end of the workshops

  • feedback through interviews at the end of the program

  • completion of the project

  • attendance at workshops



Experiential Learning Toolkit

In order to have scalable impact, the team created a detailed toolkit that will help empower the staff at the EcoCenter to continue investing in the psychological and knowledge capital of the interns.