As visitation increases and funding decreases,
caring for the outdoors requires a significant shift in all our efforts.
Hands-on volunteer experiences are one of the most powerful means of creating a caring and engaged public, and volunteer programs – when done right – have proven to be an effective, affordable, and immediately available workforce capable of tackling our most pressing outdoor stewardship needs.
This Toolkit was developed by Volunteers for Outdoor Colorado (VOC), Colorado’s largest and oldest outdoor stewardship organization. Since 1984, we have worked with land management agencies of all types to engage more than 120,000 volunteers in over 1,000 public land stewardship projects – an estimated labor value of nearly $24 million.
Throughout the site, you’ll find free guides, hands-on training, and customized consulting to help your group start, enhance, or expand your outdoor stewardship volunteer programs. By sharing VOC’s proven practices, it is our goal to enable others – in Colorado and elsewhere – to take on more of this critical boots-on-the-ground work. With more of us actively caring for the outdoors, we will ensure the next generation will find these outdoor places at least as good – if not better – than what we inherited.
Successful volunteer stewardship projects take many different forms – from short, simple tasks to multi-day, highly technical projects. The Project Selection Guide provides useful, relevant information for land managers as well as volunteer organizations to help you select volunteer stewardship projects that will meet your organizational goals, the area’s needs, and provide a positive volunteer experience.
The City of Fort Collins Natural Areas Department conserves and manages over 50,000 acres of open space. Since its inception, the Natural Areas Department has engaged volunteers on every level, from education to stewardship to leadership. Volunteers help extend outreach as well as preserve and maintain natural spaces. We believe that volunteers are one of our most valuable resources.