Volunteer Opportunities

 

Volunteer Opportunities
 
Check out the latest issue of the Winter 2017 Newsletter!
Volunteer Newsletter
 
See Past Issues of the Volunteer Newsletter
The Environmental Center offers a variety of volunteer opportunities. Many individuals, groups, and organizations donate their time to special projects each year. From cleaning up a river to leading a hike, there is something for everyone.
 
If you can help with one or more of these projects please call (574) 293-5070 for more information.
 
Scroll down the page to see all of the current opportunities or click on a category title to go directly to what interests you!
 
Coming Up Soon!
Group Projects and Special Events
Gardens & Trails
Land & Habitat Management
Program Management
Education & Outreach
 
Once you're ready to volunteer please download, fill out and return an EEC Volunteer Waiver form. You can also fill out a form at the EEC during regular office hours. Please note, some volunteer opportunities may require a background check.

* Indicates training is required

Group Projects and Special Events
Reflection Grove
This is outdoor education area consists of a small trail, a low platform deck, and a display of ash trees removed due to Emerald Ash Borer. It needs a lot of TLC right now, including cleaning/staining the platform, removing weeds, and spreading woodchips. It’s perfect for groups and would make a huge difference at the center. It is also available to be adopted through the Adopt-a-Spot program (see below).

Learning Garden 

This is a raised bed garden at the center that needs to be prepped and planted for spring. Activities include removing weeds, spreading compost & woodchips, planting seeds and small plants, and other tasks to make it an inviting area for visitors. It is also available to be adopted through the Adopt-a-Spot program.

Invasive Shrub Removals
Invasive honeysuckle shrubs are growing along the river and wetlands at the EEC and they need to be removed. This is good for groups! There are several areas needing work so this is perfect for even large groups.

EnviroFest Planning Committee  
December– August
If you enjoy event planning and are interested in promoting environmental stewardship, join the EnviroFest Planning Committee. We are looking for motivated individuals to help with fundraising, activity planning, display recruitment, and more. 

 
back to top
 
 
Gardens & Trails
Learning Garden 
Spring - Fall
This is a raised bed garden at the center that needs to be prepped and planted for spring. Activities include removing weeds, spreading compost & woodchips, planting seeds and small plants, and other tasks to make it an inviting area for visitors. It is also available to be adopted through the Adopt-a-Spot program.
Adopt-a-Trail 
Year-round
Nature lovers are invited to help care for trails at Boot Lake Nature Preserve and the EEC. Volunteers keep trails clear of trash and debris.

Trail Improvement
Year-round
Help maintain the hiking trails at the EEC. Spread wood chips, trim overgrowth and ensure trails are in good condition. Equipment and training provided.


Volunteer Farmer
March – November
Will work for...fresh veggies? Then help with the food education garden! Volunteers plant seeds, weed, water and harvest. There are spring, summer, and fall harvests. No farm/garden experience necessary and you can take home some of the harvest to enjoy!

Garden Projects
March – November
Spend time weeding, and enhancing gardens at the environmental center. There are several gardens to choose from and we have everything you need to get started!

back to top

Land & Habitat Management
Reflection Grove
Spring - Fall
This is outdoor education area is a beautiful spot to reflect on our environment and the challenges we face. Help is needed to weed, trim overgrowth, clean and stain the deck, etc. Also available to be adopted through the Adopt-a-Spot program. Perfect for groups!

Adopt-a-Spot
Year-round
Similar to the adopt-a-trail, except it is designed for groups. Spots are currently available at the EEC site including the Reflection Grove and Learning Garden. This entails keeping the area clean, weeding and special tasks for your spot like planting seeds.
Invasive Species Removal 
Year-round
Invasive plant species can quickly take over natural areas. Volunteers are needed to remove invasive plants. Species varies by season.
 
Garlic Mustard Challenge 
April - May
Volunteers are needed to help remove invasive garlic mustard from the EEC and participate in this regional challenge to remove as much of this invasive weed as possible. This is a great group volunteer activity and a fun competition! 
Contact the EEC to find out if this project is currently available.
 
Habitat Management
Year-round
Volunteers are needed to manage and improve the habitats and natural areas at the EEC. Habitats include prairie/old field, wetland, woodland, and riparian. Management may include invasive plant removal, cleanup, and planting as needed.
  
Purple Martin House Monitor
Spring & Summer
We need to discourage the starlings and attract purple martins. If this is your forte, please come and help our boxes!
 
 
Education & Outreach
Environmental Educator & Field Trip Leader *
Year-round
If you enjoy sharing nature with children than this is the volunteer opportunity for you! Deliver lessons and activities about the environment and lead hikes on the EEC trails for school, scout, and camp field trips.  Dates and times vary. Training and background check required.
 
Public Program Presenter
Year-round
Do you have a special skill you can share with others? We are always looking for new program ideas - give us a call if you have a skill you can share! 
* Indicates training is required
 Note: some volunteer opportunities may require a background check.
If you would like to become a volunteer, please fill out a volunteer application and return it to the Center at 1717 East Lusher Avenue, Elkhart, IN 46516 or fax it to 574-970-0593.
 

Past Issues of the EEC Volunteer Newsletter
Issue 13 - Fall 2017
Issue 12 - Summer 2017
Issue 11 - Spring 2017
Issue 10 - Winter 2016
Issue 9 - Fall 2016
Issue 8 - Summer 2016
Issue 7 - Spring 2016
Issue 6 - Fall 2015
Issue 5 - Summer 2015
Issue 4 - Spring 2015
Issue 3 - Winter 2015