|The President’s Hoot|
by Richard H. Baker, Ph.D.
2014: What an amazing year we’ve had thanks to your donations, volunteering, and advocacy this past year:
- Our new Audubon House is getting the finishing touches;
- The 4×4 School Square Foot Gardens are thriving;
- We stopped Indian River county from a disastrous dredge and fill project at the Oslo Road boat ramp;
- All fitting achievements for our 50th Anniversary Celebration!
- Our continuing and now new exciting programs where we all can work together will be able to occur in the Audubon House with many new roles for volunteers to:Meet and greet visitors to our new Office and especially look after the office when office manager Bob Montanaro is not present. This could involve helping guide folks around our Audubon property, removing exotics, or doing janitorial duties. We need lots of help to keep our office and grounds in great shape.
- Co-lead a nature walk at the adjacent Oslo Riverfront Conservation Area with Ken Gonyo. This is a great way to learn the local plants and animals.
- Take our Florida Medical Entomology Laboratory /Audubon Volunteer Nature Stewardship class that begins on Saturday January 24 from 1:30-4:30 and continues for 6 Saturdays of learning, all about the lagoon and Florida environment so you can knowledgeably help out.
- Assist or lead various fundraising projects and developing fund-raising ideas.
- Help with publicizing and promoting our education, science and advocacy projects. We need a publicity chair(s).
- Participate in our School Square-foot Gardens project: helping school age children construct and plan vegetable gardens on school grounds, provide brief class instruction, working side by side with a teacher.
- Assist with a new after school science program to educate students to understand, appreciate and respect the Indian River Lagoon in order to preserve it.
- Many small tasks like providing cookies at our meetings, volunteering at festival booths or helping to fold, stuff envelopes, and mail our Peligram all contribute to our Audubon efforts.
- Co-lead a field trip: (you don’t have to be an expert as another Audubon birder will join you, handling logistics, be a contact to coordinate attendees).
- Work on selecting measurable ‘quality of life’ sustainability indicators to set community goals and mark progress. We are doing this for the Lagoon, in Gifford and Fellsmere as well as the county as a whole.
- Work on various library tasks and help set up the library in the new building..
- Monitor our birds, be a citizen scientist! Be involved with Scrub Jay, Eagle Watch, special Osprey or shorebird monitoring.
- Write educational brochures or informational Letters to the Editor: research and write a 1-2 paragraph article on hot topics to share with local media (radio announcements, Press Journal, 32963, and Hometown News)
Just think, if each of our 900 members volunteered to further educate people, protect our Lagoon, wildlife and environment, or work on an issue, what we could accomplish for 2015! Please call 772-567-3520 or email PIAudubon@yahoo.com with what you would like to do or what special skills or ideas you have to share (e.g. student programs, monitoring Least Tern nesting, teach nature classes, ‘greening’ our community, and much more). We are open to your creativity and initiatives!
Happy New Year!