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Volunteer Program: Annual Summary


Volunteers at work

 

IMA Awards & Recognitions

  • Terri Lamb- Volunteer Excellence Award 2012
  • Bob Dinse- Outstanding Volunteer Award 2012
  • IMA received a $15,000 grant from REI to expand youth outreach efforts.
  • Non-Native Invasive ID and Control book won the Kudos Marketing Piece award from the National Recreation and Park Association
  • IMA received a $10,000 grant from REI to expand our youth outreach efforts
  • Volunteer Excellence Award 2010: Debbie Humphries
  • Elly Doyle - Outstanding Volunteer Award - Greg Sykes November 2010
  • Elly Doyle - Outstanding Volunteer Award - Alan Ford November 2010
  • Environmental Excellence Award - Meghan Fellows September 2010
  • Resource Management Division Volunteer Excellence Award - Karen Monroe June 2010
  • Elly Doyle Outstanding Volunteer Award 2009: Pam Lopez
  • Outstanding Performance Award - Meghan Fellows 2009
  • Communicator Awards - Non-Native Invasive ID and Control Handbook 2009
  • Director's Leadership Award - Katherine Frederick June 2009
  • Stewardship Award - Katherine Frederick April 2009
  • Fairfax Master Naturalist Armed & Dangerous April 2009
  • Resource Management Division Volunteer Excellence Award - Greg Sykes June 2008
  • Elly Doyle - Outstanding Volunteer Award - IMA Botanist Team November 2008
  • Mid-Atlantic Exotic Pest Plant Council, Inc.
  • Ninth Annual Providence District Environmental Fair March 2008
  • Friends of Trees Award - Kathy Frederick April 2007
  • Board of Supervisor's Environmental Excellence Award – IMA 2007
  • Elly Doyle - Outstanding Volunteer Award - Pam Lopez November 2007
  • Stewardship Award - Meghan Fellows 2006

IMA Program Annual Updates

2012 Annual Update 

Volunteers: 2160
Total Hours: 5472
Workdays: 235
Bags of invasive plants: 1785
Five year totals: 7793 Volunteers, 26454 Hours, 1395 workdays

Events:

  • Martin Luther King Jr. Day
  • Global Youth Service day
  • Earth Day
  • Annual Invasive Plant Removal Day
  • Take Back the Forest April 15th-May 15th
  • Volunteer Fest

Highlights

  • IMA received a $10,000 grant from REI in fall 2011 which was used to promote Take Back the Forest from April 15th to May 15th 2012. The grant provided t-shirts and invasive plant playing cards for all volunteers during Take Back the Forest as well as tools for IMA sites.
  • Over 600 Plants were planted at 10 different IMA sites.
  • In summer 2012 IMA once again received the REI grant and will use this money for installing 10 boot brush stations, providing first aid kits and tools to site leaders and also t-shirts for all Take Back the Forest volunteers.

2011 IMA Update

Volunteers:  1013
Total Hours: 3015
Workdays: 170
Bags of invasive plants: 655
Five Year Totals: 5633 Volunteers, 20982 Hours, 1160 Workdays

Events
4th  Annual Invasive Plant Removal Day (IPR) April 2011

  • 154 volunteers
  • 506 volunteer hours

6th year participating in Volunteer Fairfax's Volunteer Fest Day November 2011

  • 11 sites
  • 253 volunteers
  • 470 volunteer hours

Debris
Over 2339 bags of debris collected, not including trailer loads of loose debris or debris cut and dropped on site

Native Plants
200 native plants were planted at three separate IMA sites (or on three separate workdays).

IMA Outreach:

  • Virginia Native Plant Society (VNPS)
  • Board of Supervisor publications (ie: Braddock Beacon)
  • Fairfax Master Naturalist
  • GS Expo - Air & Space Museum
  • Girl Scout Council of the Nation’s Capital’s Annual Meeting
  • Chantilly Library teen volunteer fair
  • Kings Park West (KPW) neighborhood event
  • REI Attic Sales
  • George Mason Annual Volunteer Fair
  • Sully Quilt Show
  • Fairfax High School Volunteer Fair
  • Earth Fest at Frying Pan Farm Park

Subscriptions

  • Park News
  • Park Takes
  • ResOURces
  • NewsLink
  • Sun Gazette
  • Connection Newspapers
  • Living Local
  • The Chronicles
  • Park and REC Business
  • Fairfax Extra (The Washington Post)

Web sites

  • ResOURces online
  • Friends of Accotink
  • Home Owners Association Web sites
  • Burke Patch
  • Earth Sangha
  • Fairfax County Park Authority: Invasive Management
  • Global Youth Service Day
  • Virginia Master Naturalist
  • Mid-Atlantic Exotic Pest Plant Council, Inc.
  • Virginia Dept. of Conservation & Recreation
  • The Volunteer Family
  • Volunteer Match
  • Volunteer Fairfax

Press Releases

  • Local colleges (George Mason University, Northern Virginia Community College
  • Fairfax County Public Schools (FCPS) - middle schools & high schools
    • Fliers
    • Teacher contacts
  • Neighbor notification letters
  • Email lists from Green Friends, Earth Sangha and Site Leaders
  • Numerous phone calls & emails from the general public
  • Community service flier delivered to FCPS Career Centers, RECenters and libraries
  • Homeowner's newsletter articles (Annandale, Royal Lake & Woodglen Lake)
  • Organizational Newsletters (REI and VNPS)
  • REI Grant Recipient

2011 IMA Lessons Learned

  • Friends Groups are strong supporters of the Invasive Management work being done within Fairfax County Park Authority.
  • Schools make great partners
  • Articles in neighborhood newsletters by IMA volunteers help raise participant awareness of invasive, non-native plants and other environmental issues.
  • Volunteer IMA Site Leaders help to keep an eye on our local parks beyond the issues with invasive species and habitat management.
  • Full time staff support is required and adequate funding is critical: to replace old tools, purchase gloves and bags, and provide educational materials & signage.
  • Local Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts support our efforts while earning important awards.
  • Expanding invasive plant removals beyond the IMA site for specific events, e.g. park-wide garlic mustard pulls for Invasive Plant Removal Day, are popular and successful.
  • Limited herbicide support can encourage volunteer efforts and promote habitat restoration.
  • Fewer, larger IMA sites allow for better staff coverage and more focused efforts at improving habitats on parkland.
  • Moving sites that are in the maintenance phase or are not able to hold the required three group workdays a year to the pilot IMA Lite Program allows us to recruit new IMA Sites.
  • Native plantings require proper placement, planting at the right time of year, and deer protection to survive.

2010 IMA Update

Sites
41 sites
Over 50 acres maintained
20 IMA sites were under an acre in size, while 21 were over an acre.

Volunteers
947 volunteer participants
Seven large group/corporate sponsored events
Total of 3,589 volunteer hours earned
210 workdays where held

Five - year Grand Totals: 4,620 volunteer participants, 17,967 volunteer hours logged at 990 workdays!

Events
3rd Annual Invasive Plant Removal Day (IPR)

  • 170 volunteers
  • 577 volunteer hours

5th year participating in Volunteer Fairfax's Volunteer Fest Day

  • 9 sites
  • 164 volunteers
  • 470 volunteer hours

Partnership Support
Park site and operations staff, Earth Sangha, Northern Virginia Soil and Water Conservation District, Virginia Department of Forestry, Fairfax Master Naturalists and Fairfax ReLeaf among others.

Debris
Over 1684 bags of debris collected, not including trailer loads of loose debris or debris cut and dropped on site (over twice as many as last year).

Native Plants
Fewer sites were planted this year due to limited staff coverage, although over 237 native plants at 9 separate plantings. Seven sites were planted with native meadow seed.

Outreach Activities

Reached over 953,429 customer contacts through:

IMA Display

  • Virginia Native Plant Society (VNPS)
  • Board of Supervisor publications (ie: Braddock Beacon)
  • Northrop Grumman volunteer fair
  • River Day - Occoquan Regional Park
  • GS Expo - Air & Space Museum
  • GS Expo - Washington Park MD
  • GS Gold Award Expo - Van Dyke Park
  • Chantilly & Kings Park Library teen volunteer fair
  • Kings Park West (KPW) neighborhood event

Subscriptions

  • Park News
  • Park Takes
  • ResOURces
  • NewsLink
  • Sun Gazette
  • Connection Newspapers
  • Living Local
  • The Chronicles
  • Park and REC Business
  • Fairfax Extra (The Washington Post)

Web sites

  • ResOURces online
  • Friends of Accotink
  • Home Owners Association Web sites
  • Burke Patch
  • Earth Sangha
  • Fairfax County Park Authority: Invasive Management
  • Global Youth Service Day
  • Virginia Master Naturalist
  • Mid-Atlantic Exotic Pest Plant Council, Inc.
  • Virginia Dept. of Conservation & Recreation
  • The Volunteer Family

Press Releases

  • Local colleges (George Mason University, Northern Virginia Community College
  • Fairfax County Public Schools (FCPS) - middle schools & high schools
    • Fliers
    • Teacher contacts
  • Neighbor notification letters
  • Email lists from Green Friends, Earth Sangha and Site Leaders
  • Numerous phone calls & emails from the general public
  • Community service flier delivered to FCPS Career Centers, RECenters and libraries
  • Homeowner's newsletter articles (Annandale, Royal Lake & Woodglen Lake)
  • Organizational Newsletters (REI and VNPS)

2010 IMA Lessons Learned

  • Friends Groups are strong supporters of the Invasive Management work being done within Fairfax County Park Authority.
  • Articles in neighborhood newsletters by IMA volunteers help raise participant awareness of invasive, non-native plants and other environmental issues.
  • Volunteer IMA Site Leaders help to keep an eye on our local parks beyond the issues with invasive species and habitat management.
  • Full time staff support is required and adequate funding is critical: replace old tools, purchase gloves and bags, provide educational materials & signage.
  • Local Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts support our efforts while earning important awards.
  • Expanding invasive plant removals beyond the IMA site for specific events, e.g. park-wide garlic mustard pulls for Invasive Plant Removal Day, are popular and successful.
  • Limited herbicide use can encourage volunteer efforts and promote habitat restoration.
  • Fewer, larger IMA sites allow for better staff coverage and more focused efforts at improving habitats on parkland.

2011 IMA Plans

  • Ecological monitoring of 2010 activities
  • Continue to expand specific IMA Sites to increase overall managed acreage
  • Search for IMA Leaders at specific sites that have had leaders retire
  • Provide limited herbicide support for species that are resistant to hand pulling.
  • Staff Support Priorities:
    • Volunteer recruitment
    • Target old and new companies to increase returning volunteer base
    • Continue to expand education and outreach to AP/IB Science teachers
    • Train to become herbicide applicators in order to support IMA Leaders efforts.
    • Continue to incorporate contractor herbicide treatments with volunteer efforts
    • Encourage and support IMA Volunteer Site Leaders

2009 IMA Update

2009 IMA Update

Sites
42 sites
Over 37 acres maintained
12 IMA sites were ¼ -acre plots, 12 were ½ - 1 acre and 18 were over an acre.

Volunteers
1284 volunteer participants (up 32% from last year)
Six large group/corporate events
Total of 3,030 volunteer hours
228 total workdays (up 18% from last year)

Four- year Grand Totals: 3,655 volunteer participants, 14,936 volunteer hours logged at 794 workdays!

Events
2nd Annual Invasive Plant Removal Day (IPR)

  • 82 volunteers
  • 287 volunteer hours

4th year participating in Volunteer Fairfax's Volunteer Fest Day

  • 13 sites
  • 113 volunteers
  • 325 volunteer hours

Partnership Support
Park site and operations staff, Earth Sangha, Northern Virginia Soil and Water Conservation District, Department Of Forestry, Virginia Native Plant Society, Potomac Conservancy and Fairfax ReLeaf among others.

Debris
Over 780 bags of debris collected, not including trailer loads of loose debris or debris cut and dropped on site. (up 30% from last year)

Native Plants
Roughly 390 volunteer hours were spent planting over 418 native plants at 14 separate plantings. Six sites were planted with native meadow seed.

Outreach Activities

Reached over 55,472 customer contacts through:             

IMA Display

  • Virginia Native Plant Society (VNPS)
  • Forester's Roundtable
  • Horticultural Green Community
  • Wildlife Habitat Council (Bethesda, MD)
  • AT&T Volunteer Fair
  • Kings Park Library teen volunteer fair
  • Kings Park West (KPW) neighborhood event

Subscriptions

  • Park News
  • ResOURces
  • NewsLink

Web sites

  • Fairfax County Park Authority
  • Earth Sangha
  • ResOURces online
  • Friends of Accotink 
  • Home Owners Association Web sites

Press Releases

  • Local colleges (George Mason University, Northern Virginia Community College)
  • Fairfax County Public Schools (FCPS) - middle schools & high schools
  • Fliers
  • Teacher contacts
  • Spring newspaper editions
  • Neighbor notification letters
  • Email lists from Green Friends, Earth Sangha and Site Leaders
  • Numerous phone calls & emails from the general public
  • Community service flier delivered to FCPS Career Centers, RECenters and libraries
  • Homeowner's newsletter articles (Annandale, Royal Lake & Woodglen Lake)
  • Organizational Newsletters (REI and VNPS)

2009 IMA Lessons Learned

  • Neighborhood newsletters help raise participant awareness of invasive, non-native plants and other environmental issues.
  • Full time staff support is required and adequate funding is critical: replace old tools, purchase gloves and bags, provide educational materials & signage.
  • Volunteer recruitment through the school system is working and the company volunteer base is growing, but education and outreach to Advanced Placement (AP) / International Baccalaureate (IB) Science teachers needs more effort.
  • Large groups need enough site leaders to guide and motivate specific task areas.
  • Being able to work year-round is seen positively by volunteers.
  • Site Leaders & participants appreciate being able to go outside the IMA Plot for limited activities across the entire park.

2010 IMA Plans

  • Ecological monitoring of 2009 activities
  • Continue to expand specific IMA Sites to increase overall managed acreage
  • Search for IMA Leaders at specific sites that have had leaders retire
  • Staff Support Priorities:
    • Volunteer recruitment
    • Target old and new companies to increase returning volunteer base
    • Continue to expand education and outreach to AP/IB Science teachers
    • Continue to incorporate contractor herbicide treatments with volunteer efforts
    • Encourage and support IMA Volunteer Site Leaders

2008 IMA Update

2008 IMA Update

Sites

  • 40 sites
  • Over 35 acres maintained
  • Acreage breakdown of IMA sites: 17 were at least 1 acre, 11 were ¼ acre plots, 9 were ½ acres and 3 were roughly ¾ acre plots.

    Volunteers

  • 975 volunteer participants (101 Invasive Plant Removal Day, 185 Volunteer Fest)
  • Nine large groups supported our efforts (corporate/school/scout)
  • Contributing a total of over 3,892 volunteer hours at 193 total workdays

    Three year Grand Totals: 2,368 volunteer participants, 10,539 volunteer hours logged at 566 workdays!

    Partnership Support

  • NRMP, various park staff, Earth Sangha, Northern Virginia Soil and Water Conservation District, Department Of Forestry, Potomac Conservancy, and Fairfax ReLeaf among others.

    Debris

  • Over 600 bags collected, not including trailer loads of loose debris, or debris cut and dropped on site.

    Native Plants

  • Over 961 (including rescued) native plants were installed at ten different IMA sites over approximately 4 acres. Three sites were planted with native meadow seed.

    Outreach Activities

    Reached 287,437 known customer contacts through:
  • IMA Display
    • Surfrider
    • Green Festival
    • Kings Park West (KPW) neighborhood event
  • Subscriptions
    • Park News
    • Park Takes
    • ResOURces
    • NewsLink
    • Conservation Currents
  • Web sites
    • Earth Sangha
    • ResOURces on line
    • Friends of Accotink
    • HOA websites
  • Press Releases
  • Fairfax County Public Schools (middle schools & high schools)
  • Neighbor notification letters
  • Television and cable coverage
  • Email lists from Green Friends, Earth Sangha and Site Leaders
  • Numerous phone calls & emails from the general public
  • Community service flier delivered to FCPS Career Centers, RECenters and libraries
  • Homeowner's newsletter articles (Annandale, Royal Lake & Woodglen Lake)
  • Organizational Newsletters (REI and VNPS)

2007 IMA Update

Sites

  • 38 sites
  • Over 34 acres maintained
  • Five IMA sites were over 1 acre, five were at least ½-acre plots and seven IMA sites were under ½ acres.

Volunteers

  • 935 volunteer participants
  • Three large group/corporate events
  • Contributing at total of 4,361 volunteer hours
  • 219 total workdays

Partnership Support

  • NRMP, various park staff, Earth Sangha, Northern Virginia Soil and Water Conservation District, Department Of Forestry, Potomac Conservancy, and Fairfax ReLeaf among others.

Debris

  • Over 590 bags collected, not including trailer loads of loose debris, or debris cut and dropped on site.

Native Plants

  • Over 1,304 native plants were installed at fifteen different IMA sites.
  • Four sites were planted with native meadow seed.

Outreach Activities

Reached 287,665 known customer contacts through:
  • Attendees at the EcoSavvy, Ma-eppc and Ecological Society of America / Society of Ecological Restoration (ESA/SER) conferences
  • Homeowner's newsletter articles (Annandale, Rutherford, Pohick SV & Woodglen)
  • Organizational Newsletters (REI and VNPS)
  • IMA Display
    • Frying Pan Corporate Olympics
    • Vienna's Environmental Day
    • Woodley Hills community day
    • Virginia Cooperative Extension Tree Forum
  • Green Rangers program participants
  • Watershed / water event
  • Neighbor notification letters
  • Email lists from Green Friends, Earth Sangha and Site Leaders
  • Numerous phone calls & emails from the general public
  • Subscriptions.
    • Park News
    • Park Takes
    • ResOURces
    • NewsLink
    • Conservation Currents
  • Web site - ResOURces on line, Friends of Accotink & HOA websites
  • Community service flier to schools, RECenters and libraries
  • Press Releases
  • Television, cable and radio interviews / coverage

2006 IMA Update

Volunteers

  • 3 group/corporate events (180 participants)
  • 133 workdays on 21 sites
  • About 875 people contributed over 1300 volunteer hours!

Sites

  • Over 8 acres maintained as IMA sites: 21 sites total
  • 16 IMA sites were ½ acre plots
  • 5 IMA sites that were under ½ acre

Debris Removal

  • Over 250 bags collected! Plus several trailer and roll-off/dumpster loads of loose debris and debris that was cut and dropped on site.

Native Plants

  • Over 300 native plants were installed at six different IMA sites
  • 2 sites planted with native meadow seed

Participation in Outreach Events

* EcoSavvy conference * Homeowner's Association Newsletter Articles * the NEST program * Blue's Rangers (blues) Concert at Frying Pan Farm * World Water Monitoring Day *

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