Tag Archives: Tennessee

Volunteers Working with Rangers

Through the Trees

by Robert Barossi

I found out this morning that today is World Ranger Day. Along with environmental volunteers, Park Rangers are on the front lines of conservation efforts around the world. Rangers do a wide variety of jobs, including many tasks which are directly related to environmental protection and preservation. They are often, if not always, the ones who train and lead the volunteers who work alongside them.

There are numerous examples of volunteers and rangers working together. Here are just a few of them that popped up this morning: In Wyoming, both volunteers and rangers work to keep people using the parks safe. In Tennessee, volunteers are working alongside rangers to remove invasive species. The same kind of work is happening in Great Britain. A volunteer in this story from North Carolina notes that the volunteers support and assist the rangers by doing “necessary work that the park rangers don’t have time to accomplish.” And on the Delaware River, rangers and volunteers worked side-by-side to clean up the river during a large annual cleanup event.

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Volunteers Up and Down the River

IMG_2855(Photo by Robert Barossi)

by Robert Barossi

Sitting here in the middle of a blizzard, it’s nice to think of a warm day in spring, walking along the banks of a river, watching the tranquil current as it makes its way downstream. Maybe it’s the Tennessee River, a 650 mile-long river in the southeast United States that makes up the largest tributary of the Ohio River. If I happen to be sitting on the shore of the Tennessee this spring, I might also see a barge float by, a barge that also happens to be a floating classroom. This traveling classroom will be teaching lessons about conservation and cleaning up the river as it makes its way from Knoxville, Tennessee to Paducah, Kentucky, over twenty-two days. It’s all part of a program spearheaded by the organization Living Lands and Waters. According to the organization’s website, the “Tennessee River Tour” will be “partnering with cities, government agencies and other conservation groups to host educational workshops, river cleanups, tree plantings and other conservation activities.” This unique program gives volunteers in a number of locations a chance to participate in environmentally beneficial programs while seeing firsthand just how much debris is in the river, since the trash pulled out during cleanups will be collected and carried on the barge. Providing that kind of visual evidence of what’s polluting our waterways is a great idea and one which would be helpful in many of our important rivers.

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

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