Press Release

Outdoor Colorado Seeks Volunteers to Help with Flood and Fire Restoration Work

Volunteers for Outdoor Colorado to Lead Various Service Days Statewide

This summer, the statewide nonprofit, Volunteers for Outdoor Colorado (VOC), will lead multiple volunteer service days throughout the state in an effort to restore lands damaged by floods and wildfires.

2014 marks VOC’s 30th anniversary and the organization is celebrating with a variety of stewardship projects and special activities statewide. This year, more than one-third of VOC’s public volunteer opportunities – including some of which are special 30th anniversary commemorative projects – are flood and fire restoration-related.

“In recent years, a huge swath of our landscape was damaged by calamitous floods, drought and extreme wildfires,” said Ann Baker Easley, executive director for VOC. “Fortunately, people are eager to help restore and repair these heavily damaged areas, and their volunteer efforts are essential in helping Colorado recover as quickly as possible.”

Below are some of VOC’s upcoming flood and wildfire mitigation projects taking place in June and July; similar projects will be announced throughout the season. Additionally, several other projects are scheduled for August through October.

June 21 & 22 AND July 19 & 20 – West Fork Fire & Trail Restoration
9 a.m. – 4 p.m., all skill levels, minimum age to volunteer: 16

The June 2013 West Fork Fire was a complex of wildfires near Wolf Creek Pass in southern Colorado, burning more than 109,500 acres. Much of these fires impacted several recreation sites on the Rio Grande National Forest, including motorized and non-motorized trails. Restoration work will focus on improving drainage, building erosion control structures and clearing out blown down debris.

June 28 – Wilderness 50th Anniversary Projects: Flood Restoration at Beaver Meadows Trail, Brookside Trail, Mt. Evans Trail, Tanglewood Trail and More
8 a.m. – 4 p.m., skill level: moderate, minimum age to volunteer: 14

2014 marks the 50th anniversary of the passing of the Wilderness Act of 1964. In honor of the occasion, VOC will lead volunteers in several locations within the Mt. Evans Wilderness where they will help restore popular trails that were heavily damaged by flooding.

July 11 – Poudre Learning Center Flood Restoration
9 a.m. – 4 p.m., skill level: easy and moderate, minimum age to volunteer: 8

The September 2013 floods severely impacted the Poudre Learning Center and left many areas in need of restoration. Volunteers will re-seed areas that have been inundated with sediment, restore washed-out trails, help to fortify an oxbow (river bend) along the Cache La Poudre River and pick up flood debris.

July 26 – Waldo Canyon Restoration
8 a.m. – 4 p.m., skill level: difficult, minimum age to volunteer: 16

In response to the 2012 18,500-acre Waldo Canyon Fire, volunteers will help mitigate flooding and repair fire damage. These burn areas are now subject to erosion and mudslides which threaten Colorado Springs’ municipal water supply, Highway 24 and public and private infrastructure. Work will involve removal of burned hazard trees, re-shaping the ground surface, re-seeding, tree and seedling planting, and building erosion control structures to stabilize drainages.

To Volunteer: VOC volunteer opportunities are open to the public, and no experience or training is necessary to volunteer. Volunteers are asked to register in advance to ensure adequate quantities of tools, supplies and food. Register via the VOC volunteer project calendar at www.voc.org/volunteer or by calling 303-715-1010.

Logo courtesy Volunteers for Outdoor Colorado

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