Project Orange Story by Emily Vanous

I first heard about Project Orange in an email from Houston Millennials.

I had already been to a VDVR training and am very concerned about the lack of voice disenfranchised populations have in our government, so it was a perfect opportunity for me. I was excited to be in a position to have a direct and almost immediate impact relating to people engaging in their civic duties.

I was nervous my first time going to register voters, but only because I was unsure of the process, not the environment. I was made to feel at ease right away though. While there were things to get sorted out and improved during each volunteer session, I always felt safe and, most of the time, very appreciated by the people who I registered to vote.

It was also an incredible opportunity to get a better understanding of the experience of the men and women who spend time behind bars, sometimes only because they can’t afford bail. Eye opening!

Overall, volunteering with Project Orange was a great opportunity to feel like I was giving back to my community, engaging in a crucial civic duty and shining some hope on the future for people who felt like they had hit a road block.

I absolutely will be continuing to volunteer with this incredible organization and also hope to help spread the word about this groundbreaking initiative.