Tag Archives: environmental volunteers

Cleaning Up Down Under

Through the Trees


(Photo by Robert Barossi)

Coming up on Sunday, March 2nd is this year’s Cklean Up Australia Day, an event across Australia where, in 2013, hundreds of thousands of volunteers cleaned up trash at thousands of sites nationwide. Volunteers are essential to these kinds of massive efforts. Just one example of a single cleanup happening in the Wolgan Valley is this article from the Lithgow Mercury. The story details efforts led by the Emirates Wolgan Valley Resort and Spa to clean up the surrounding area. The resort claims on its website to be “Australia’s most environmentally responsible tourist destination.” This is just one example of how they back that up and, in doing so, get local volunteers involved.

Clean Up Australia Day’s official website can be found here.


Cleaning Rivers Everywhere

Winter Stream(Photo by Robert Barossi)

When it comes to environmental volunteers, bodies of water are often where the energy and efforts are focused. Rivers, lakes, streams, ponds and wetlands frequently receive the attention of volunteers, often working for a local environmental organization. From taking water quality samples to pulling piles of trash out of the water, there are a number of important tasks performed by dedicated volunteers.

According to the Napa Valley Register, volunteers have been anĀ  important part of cleanup efforts along the Napa River, including removing 700 pounds of trash and debris. More than a ton of trash was taken from the Little Harpeth River, according to a similar article in The Tennessean. The event, which included a number of concerned groups in the area, featured 86 volunteers who cleaned up twenty-two miles of the river’s bank, eleven miles on each side. There may have been fewer volunteers, but a cleanup effort along the San Pedro River, mentioned in the Sierra Vista herald, was no less significant. And, of course, these efforts take place all over the world, as evidenced in this article from the Lancashire Evening Post, detailing a cleanup of River Ribble in Northern England.

Some of the environmental organizations involved in the above cleanups include:

Friends of the San Pedro River – www.sanpedroriver.org/fsprhome.shtml

Preston Society – www.prestonsociety.org.uk

Ribble Rivers Trust – www.ribbletrust.org.uk

Urban Environmental Volunteers

Through the Trees(Photo by Robert Barossi)

It can be argued that the most important place to preserve green spaces is in cities and urban areas. As people move into these heavily populated and tightly developed places, they can lose touch with nature, losing that all-important connection with the natural world. In many cities, there are small green spaces dotting the urban landscape. Parks and squares and patches of green earth, all of which need care and love from volunteers, so that every city dweller can enjoy them. This recent article from New York Daily News discusses one such effort. Volunteer docents are now offering guided walking tours of Brooklyn Bridge Park. Every Sunday, the volunteers lead groups through the park, discussing the ecology as well as the park’s history and significance. Education is an important element of these tours, especially when it comes to young schoolchildren. These kinds of efforts are essential to keeping our connection with nature, especially the small bits of nature found in cities, and no doubt are happening in urban areas across the country.

The volunteer tours are coordinated by the Brooklyn Bridge Park Conservancy. Check out their website here.