Volunteer Opportunities (To be Updated)
Often those who care most about our environment think they would like to do SOMETHING to help…but what? Volunteer opportunities with your local Sierra Club range from political activist to something as simple as writing a letter to your local newspaper. In-between, there are opportunities to help organize and run outings, make program suggestions, contribute time to help welcome new members at meetings or by mail or phone, or take an active leadership role by sitting on the Executive Committee. Whether you have lots of experience or no experience, there is a volunteer job waiting for you with RG. Like most other groups, there are always more jobs to go around than volunteers to fill them, but taking on even one small job need not take up a lot of your time. You let us know what areas you may be interested in and how much time you have to give, and we will gladly work with you.
Rappahannock Greenways has just been established as a long-term project for RG in the counties it serves. Plans are to connect these communities with a network of biking and pedestrian paths to allow citizens safe, comfortable and convenient alternatives to the traffic congestion for basic transportation and recreation. This project is still in its seminal stages. In partnership with VDOT, the SC VA Chapter and other local groups and jurisdiction planning offices, connecting our more comprehensive plan with other pathways projects already being developed. A public forum on the project is planned for October 19 at 7 pm in the Free Lance-Star Community Room on Amelia St. in Fredericksburg if you want to learn more. If you have experience in planning, transportation or other related field, or if this project just appeals to you, please contact Scott Howson to find out how you can help.
Newsletter Layout Editor
Our newsletter layout editor will be moving out of the area soon, and we need a new layout editor NOW! The right person will be someone who is comfortable with computer newsletter layout and manipulating text and graphics (photos, clip art, ads). We publish anywhere from 4 to 8 pages of news four times a year, and work hours are limited to the third week of February, May, August and November. Seniors, college students or even high school students who are interested in desktop publishing would be excellent volunteer candidates…and experience never looks bad on a resume. We would ask for at least a one year commitment.
The layout editor will work closely during those weeks with the copy editor, who will provide finished and edited copy for layout, and assist with placement and final editing reviews as needed.
Well, we don’t actually have a “committee” as yet, but we would like to. We currently have over 500 members, and newsletters to mail to all of them four times a year. Small jobs associated with published and distributing our newsletter include getting it to the printer, folding, stapling, labeling and mailing our newsletter. Our newsletter publishes September 1, December 1, March 1 and June 1. Most work would be done a few days prior to these dates, and no one job need take more than a couple of hours. If you are interested in helping with the newsletter, please contact Linda Muller at 540.907.0198.
Earth Day is an SC annual banner event, and we always need volunteers to help on just that one day. Help plan, prepare and/or hand out conservation and educational materials, or work with other RG members on fun projects that help educate children about enjoying and protecting the environment. Help with set up or clean up. Do you have two hours to give once a year? Earth Day is held on/about the third Saturday of April at Alum Spring Park in Fredericksburg, with a rain date set for the following day. If you want to help in some way, please contact Eric Stott firstname.lastname@example.org or telephone 540.429.0898.
Members often say one of the main reasons they joined the Sierra Club is “for the outings.” Getting outside and appreciating nature is one of the main missions of SC, and there are plenty of places to go and things to enjoy in our area. We need volunteers who would like to plan and lead some of these outings—even one outing a year would be welcome. Because our membership tends toward the “senior” end of the age spectrum, a senior outings schedule (shorter, less demanding hikes) was proposed as something we might like to work on. Please contact Larry Gross if you think you would like to participate as an outings leader.
Hospitality/Membership Committee Members
Do you like people, and find conversation and the social amenities come easily to you? Then consider helping our hospitality and/or membership committees. Possibilities include meeting and greeting new members at meetings, or contacting them by phone, mail or e-mail to welcome them and discuss their environmental interests. If they live near you, offer to bring them to a meeting. If you might be interested in helping in this way, please contact Eric Stott at email@example.com or telephone 540.429.0898.
Conservation, like Education, is a major focus of the SC mission. Are there conservation issues in your neighborhood you would like to see addressed? We welcome your ideas and observations, and will work with you to develop an effective approach to give voice to your concerns. Please contact Helen Sanders.
As we all have at one time learned the hard way, it does make a difference who our local and state representatives are. It can mean the difference between sprawl and open space, comfortable drives or transportation gridlock, a clean river or a polluted one. RG makes an effort to evaluate local candidates for election, publicize our findings, and throw our support behind the greenest candidates we can find. At times, individual members, speaking as private citizens, choose to speak at special public meetings, or write editorials for publication in their local newspapers on issues they are passionate about. This is activism at its best, and yes, it does make a difference.
If you have an interest in helping evaluate local government candidates or want to get involved in specific “hot” issues in our area, please contact Eric Lawrence Stott to find out more on how you can make a difference.
RG is also in the process of adopting a portion of the new Dahlgren Railroad Heritage Trail, to maintain in the future. If you are interested in helping with this project, please contact Eric Stott.
RG also partners with Friends of Alum Spring Park, and some of our members volunteer once or twice a year to help with cleaning up the park, re-routing trails, or repairing paths or other work as needed. Call Eric Stott to get on the list if you would like to participate in these activities.
RG’s Fundraising Program is designed to supplement the financial support we get from National, which is limited. In order to publish our newsletter, it is necessary for us to raise several hundred dollars every year. To this end, we currently undertake small fundraising projects throughout the year, such as the sale of Sierra Club Calendars, sales of Sierra Club greeting and knowledge cards (for kids), and our holiday gift basket raffle. In 2008, we will be looking at new fundraising initiatives.
We are always in need of volunteers to help with our fundraising programs. If you have an interest in or experience with successful fundraising programs and would like to help, please contact Eric Stott at firstname.lastname@example.org or telephone 540.429.0898.
Although we do not request donations from our members, we gladly accept donations when offered. Donors can specify if the funds are for general use (unrestricted, not tax-deductible), the SC Foundation (earmarked for tax deductible education/conservation projects only), or for a special project or cause. Please contact the RG Treasurer for more information.
You can make a donation by mailing a check to:
The Rappahannock Group of the Sierra Club
P.O. Box 7972
Fredericksburg, VA 22402
One of the ways some of our members and supporters who own local businesses choose to support the work of RSG is to become an advertising sponsor for our quarterly RG newsletter. The cost of a small business card size ad is $25 per newsletter issue, or $100 per year. Because of the loyal support of these environmental patrons, we are able to bring you what we feel is a top-notch newsletter that keeps you informed on issues that affect you in your own community. If you have an interest in supporting the work of RSG in this way, please contact the Newsletter Editor for more details.