Thanks to the inspired leadership of Linda Skeff of Brookdale, the VWC Board happily the application for an AmeriCorps grant to gain the help of a teams of 9 to 12 young people to come help with invasive plant removal and native plant restoration at Highlands Park. The team will also complete a series of other community improvement projects to gain and practice new skills, as required by the grant. A Community Foundation Environmental Grant will also be sought, to help provide equipment and supplies for this effort, all thanks to Linda’s years of experience and planning.
Over five years ago, Linda, an Environmental Committee member, instigated the creation of The Restoration Project as a VWC Environmental Committee undertaking. The first effort brought teen and adult volunteers together to start removing invasive non-native vegetation from the riparian corridor at Highlands Park. Their efforts also provided the participants with the skills to do the same on their own properties and in their neighborhoods. The Project expanded to the Junction Park, in conjunction with 4-H (under the leadership of Environmental Committee member Jennifer Hennig) and the Boulder Creek Recreation District (thanks to BC Rec Director, Hallie Greene’s involvement). There, significant progress was made and has improved native habitat at the park significantly. Signage commemorating the effort is posted at the Park.
Linda led other restoration efforts at the SLV Museum at the south end of Boulder Creek, and now an exciting restoration effort up at Garrahan Park north of town has just led to the removal of massive amounts of non-native vegetation to help create pool habitat for the endangered Red-Legged Frog!
In 2014, a group of AmeriCorps volunteers was brought to the SLV and were in need of projects to advance their skills. Turning to the VWC, they were directed to Linda and these remarkable young people removed heaps of English ivy from land and trees up behind SLV High, and mulched the area to prevent its return. This inspired Linda to design an extensive project to present to AmeriCorps for their consideration.
Rapidly, preliminary approval was given by AmeriCorps, so detailed planning intensified, and Linda has brought in the help and support of County Parks, local contractors, and other nonprofit organizations and agencies to design a remarkable series of tasks for the AmeriCorps team to complete.
Kudos and thanks to Linda, and all those offering to help, and best wishes for receiving the grants! To help achieve this effort, please email Linda.
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