By Jenny McCune
Almost 3,000 athletes are competing in Sochi, and behind each one is a small army of experts in sports, psychology, and physical therapy. But the number of people on those elite support teams are just a drop in the bucket compared to the thousands of volunteers required to put on an event like the Olympics. Approximately 25,000 volunteers are doing jobs ranging from driving athletes and coaches around, translating among the many languages spoken by the athletes and spectators, and providing medical assistance. Volunteers come from all walks of life, and without them the Olympics wouldn’t happen.
The same is true for conservation! Canada has many committed scientists working to conserve our forests, grasslands, oceans and waterways – and all the fascinating species that live in them. But we can’t do it on our own. Successful conservation also depends on the work of many citizen scientists – Canadians of all ages and backgrounds who help collect data, restore ecosystems, and protect species at risk. For example, you can get involved by reporting your sightings of frogs and toads, birds, flowering plants or worms in your area. You can monitor Monarch butterfly populations or melting ice, or joining in a one-day BioBlitz.
Volunteers have been working in conservation for decades, and without them many conservation projects just wouldn’t be possible. Please post a Comment below to share your own experiences volunteering in conservation!