Peak & Prairie
Your skills, Your Heart and Your Hands Wanted
by Mary Romano, Chapter Office Manager
The Rocky Mountain Chapter has a multitude of opportunities for expressing your concern for our environment. We are (like Ivory soap) 98 and 44/100ths percent pure volunteer! The people who care enough to give some of their time to a cause they believe in are truly the lifeblood of the Club. Volunteering offers you the opportunity to meet people like you, challenge yourself in new ways, learn more about issues that you care about and get the satisfaction that you have done something to help make the world a better place.
If you have filled out a volunteer coupon in the back of Peak & Prairie, thanks, that's great! This coupon will be entered into an interest category of our member database, giving volunteer leaders lists of names of people interested in their activities. However, because we lack a volunteer coordinator to work on this important project--something for which you may want to volunteer for--you may not get called as soon as you expected. Please don't let that block your enthusiasm for doing something sooner. There are other ways to find your place and let us know your interests.
The first rule is Follow your interests! This is how you will be most content with your volunteer work. Check over the list of chapter conservation committees, administrative committees and Peak & Prairie staff (on Pages 2-3 of each issue) for ideas. If there is a committee that looks interesting to you and you'd like to know more about it (maybe you'd like to know more about forests or wildlife, population or air quality--or fundraising), you can find out when the committee meets and what it is doing by calling the person listed (the committee chair) and speaking with her or him about your interest. For more information on volunteer opportunities with the Club or for extra help in finding your direction, you may also call our chapter office, (303) 861-8819. We're there for volunteer and membership support. Call us.
Just a few of the volunteer positions currently needing warm bodies and more include the volunteer coordinator, Peak & Prairie editor(s), calendar editor and layout, as well as agriculture, transportation, hazardous waste, annual retreat coordinator, retreat meals coordinator and retreat workshop coordinator. If these jobs seem beyond you, we also need day-to-day help with things like member mailings, phone calls and hosting potlucks. Help us by putting your skills, your heart and your hands to work for something you care about. You'll be rewarded with satisfaction, and the environment will be better off!
Inner City Outings
Volunteer trip leaders needed. ICO takes disadvantaged youth from the city into the wilderness and provides some environmental education. Some of these kids may grow up to be conservationists. ICO also needs someone to lay out a one-page newsletter for the kids four times a year. Call Kurt Aronow at (303) 661-9307.
Toxics & Forest Volunteers
The chapter conservation committee needs people with a strong and enduring interest in toxic substances and National Forest management issues to be resource persons and/or participate on a volunteer committee. Toxics and National Forest issues have become particularly complex, but they also have aspects that any lay person can appreciate. For example, everyone understands that living downwind from a chemical plant may pose a health hazard, and most people resonate, from a purely esthetic point of view, with the values of a healthy forest.
A committee person should have some grasp of the complexities of the issue area and a strong desire to learn more, but an equal or greater desire to educate the Club membership and the public and help empower people to influence government or private decisions. To discuss either position, contact Chapter Conservation Chair Kirk Cunningham at (303) 939-8519 or at email@example.com.
If you prefer working with people to working on issues, volunteer coordinator for your local Sierra Club group may be the job for you. The local volunteer coordinator is the "welcome wagon" of the Sierra Club, responding to new members who have expressed an interest in volunteering and explaining to them how and where they can help. You don't need to know much about the issues; all that's needed is a willingness to help other people get plugged in by knowing what committees are looking for volunteers. Just fill out and mail the volunteer form below, and we'll get it to your group.
If animals are your thing, consider working with Sierra Club's wildlife committee. There are a wide variety of wildlife issues around the state that would benefit from your involvement. Just fill out the coupon at the end of this section or call Karen Wharton at (303) 642-3117.
One area of our planet that is not overpopulated is the population committee. A big part of what they do is public education. To find out how you can help, mail in the coupon. Whatever your cause, it's a lost cause without population control.
If you love hikes, socializing and organizing, please consider working with the outings program. You can organize hikes on the local or state level, from simple afternoon hikes around town to lengthy overnights out-of-state. We especially need help at the state level. If you are interested in learning more, just fill out the coupon.
There are no shortage of opportunities to help the wilderness areas close to home. There are always areas under consideration for wilderness. In addition, every wilderness area must be managed to maintain its wilderness characteristics. Just fill out the coupon and the wilderness committee will get in touch with you.
The computer committee needs help refurbishing and lending its many donated computers (obsolescent but not obsolete). To help, just fill out the coupon.
If you read the paper or listen to the news, you probably know that the Sierra Club frequently uses the legal system to protect the environment. No matter what part of the state you are in, if you have any legal skills, you can help out. Whether you're an attorney, a typist, a court reporter or an activist with special knowledge about a legal-environmental issue, we can use your help. To get involved in this essential area, just mail in the coupon.
Open Space Organizers
The new urban parks and open space committee has plenty of space for new volunteers. We are working on the City of Denver's plans for a new park just east of Stapleton Airport. The park was created by a legal settlement initiated by other Sierra Club volunteers. To get involved, just clip out the coupon.
The chapter energy committee seeks volunteers. The committee focuses on energy conservation, alternative sources of energy and the environmental impact of energy, including electricity production, home and business use and transportation. To get involved, please fill out the coupon.
The agriculture committee has a wide range of concerns and needs a wide range of volunteers. Everyone from farmers to consumers are invited to participate. Members from the Poudre Canyon Group are especially needed! You don't have to know about every issue or participate in every event. Remember, you are what you eat! To find out more, fill out the coupon.
The Front Range Mountain Backdrop Project is a five-county cooperative effort to identify critical parcels of land along the Front Range foothills for future open space preservation. Volunteer action groups are forming in Boulder, Larimer, Jefferson, El Paso and Douglas counties. You can become involved in preserving our metropolitan vistas by filling out the coupon.
The mining committee focuses on new mining proposals, proposed changes in state regulations by the Mined Land Reclamation Board, pollution from existing and abandoned mines and federal mining law reform. We need volunteers from around the state to watchdog mines for compliance with federal and state laws and to visit BLM and Forest Service offices to get information on new mining proposals. Volunteers will also help spearhead efforts to reform the federal Mining Law of 1872 by educating activists on the status of reform legislation. Just use the clip-out coupon.
The pesticides committee provides information and assistance in dealing with the unintended toxic consequences of the "battle of the bugs." To become involved with the committee's work, mail in the coupon.
The lifestyle committee focuses on the individual's ability to create lifestyle changes that support a sustainable and environmentally sound future. The committee is working hard to show people how easy it is to make changes that benefit the health of the planet. To learn more about how you can become involved with the committee's work, just fill out the coupon.
Just before you receive each issue of Peak & Prairie, a rowdy bunch of trusty volunteers gets together and has a party--a mailing party. This is where all 12,000 Peak & Prairies are labeled, sorted, bundled and prepared for the post office. It's a great way to meet new people, have fun and do your part for Colorado's environment. Fill out the coupon below or call Angela at (303) 433-2608.
If you prefer to volunteer during the day, the Sierra Club chapter office in Denver can use you. The office is open from 8 to 4 and has an incredible variety of opportunities from which to choose. Managing the phones, computer tasks, membership and volunteer coordination are just a few. There's a lot of work involved in keeping 14,000 members happy, and new volunteers are always needed.
Getting Peak & Prairie out to all our members is quite an accomplishment. It's actually a multitude of various tasks, from writing articles to loading pickup trucks. Peak & Prairie is a great place to volunteer. There are plenty of opportunities to use your skills (or learn new ones). Best of all, most tasks require just a couple of hours every two months. Besides the three big volunteer jobs posted above (editor, layout, calendar editor), we are looking for people to help out with:
-Editorial Assistants - preliminary reading, initial editing and copy editing the articles that appear in P&P; and
-Circulation - helping put together the mailing parties as well as shuttling the newsletters between the printer, mailing party and post office.
If you are ever on a Sierra Club hike (past, present or future) or participate in trail maintenance or even an interesting public meeting or a group or committee meeting and have pictures (black & white or color), please let us use them in Peak & Prairie. Just send them to the Sierra Club office, 777 Grant Street, Suite 606, Denver, CO 80203, Attn: Photo Editor. Please include a description of the hike or event, photo, participants and date, as well as instructions about returning the photo.
Water Resources Committee
The chapter water resources committee deals with local, state and regional water resource issues. To volunteer, fill out the coupon below or contact Steve Glazer at P.O. Box 459, Crested Butte, CO 81224; phone: (970) 349-6646, when in Denver: (303) 757-2303; or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
CLIP-OUT VOLUNTEER COUPON
No matter how much time or experience you have, you can make a difference to the future
of Mother Earth. Start by filling out and mailing in this coupon. Another volunteer will
contact you about how you can help out according to your schedule and interests.