Category Archives: wetlands

Volunteers Are Cleaning Up, Part 2

Rocks in Still Water(Photo by Robert Barossi)

by Robert Barossi

This morning, I couldn’t help but notice the number of stories about volunteer cleanups. Maybe it’s just that time of year? Or maybe these events are just happening more than ever. And being reported about more than ever in local news outlets.

Roughly four hundred volunteers participated in this event in State College, PA, led by ClearWater Conservancy. The volunteers cleaned up the area’s watershed at fifty different important sites.

Up in Minnesota, an impressive number of volunteers  also showed up for this event. Led by Cascade Meadow Wetlands & Environmental Science Center, the effort, which included many students, cleaned up the trash in a large wetland area.

Finally, some two hundred volunteers in Maryland showed up at Fort McHenry to clean up trash and waste. Led by the National Parks Conservation Association and the National Aquarium, the volunteers cleaned up lots of trash while also performing tasks such as tree planting and trail maintenance.

If you’ve enjoyed the stories on this blog, check out my eBook, Being Where You Are: How Environmental Volunteers Impact Their Community and the Planet Every Day



Barnes and Noble


Shaping the Shoreline

 Onondaga_Lake_Park(Photo by Joegrimes at en.wikipedia [Public domain], from Wikimedia Commons)

by Robert Barossi

This story came to me from my friend (and fellow Green Mountain College alum) Christine Harris. On the environmental blog The Ecotone Exchange, you will find of excellent articles, well worth reading. The story comes from upstate New York, where members of the Onondaga Lake Conservation Corps are actually creating a new wetland through their work, which includes planting native shrubs and trees and building habitat structures. This very hands-on work is both inspiring and educational and will go a long way towards protecting the habitats and species of the lake’s shoreline. It’s also likely to increase awareness among the human population and foster a greater connection to this precious natural area.

Check out more information on the Onondaga Lake Conservation Corps here. And some great photos form the project are here.

Appreciating and Honoring Volunteers

436(Photo by Robert Barossi)

by Robert Barossi

I feel pretty confident in saying that not one of the volunteers I interviewed for my book ever did anything for any kind of public recognition, attention or reward. Volunteers do what they do for a myriad of reasons but it’s almost never for the recognition, even though they often deserve it. Most, if not all, organizations do recognize and reward or thank their volunteers, often with an annual event or ceremony of some kind. This story from Delaware’s Cape Region, found on, describes on such event. According to the article, “Wetland Warrior Award, now in its seventh year, is presented annually to a citizen, organization, or business that has demonstrated exemplary efforts to benefit Delaware wetlands in the areas of outreach and education, monitoring and assessment, or restoration and protection.” From the sound of it, this years recipients truly deserved the recognition.