Natural Resources Stewards Program
Join us and Explore, Learn, and Share Nature Locally!
The Natural Resources Stewards program is now enrolling and has adapted its annual training course for people to learn about nature - in their local parks, woodlands, or backyards -- while keeping everyone safe.
UNH Cooperative Extension and its partners are preparing a hybrid Natural Resources Stewards course, which begins Sept 4th, 2020. Open to all who love being outdoors, this 12-week class will combine online learning with seven outdoor field sessions at Canterbury Shaker Village on its nearly 700 acres of nature trails, ponds, gardens, and forests, offering ample opportunities for outdoor exploration and discovery.
The 12-week training program enables participants to deepen their knowledge about New Hampshire’s vast natural resources, join a like-minded community, access experts in their area of interest, and share that love of nature with their community as volunteers and citizen scientists.
This year’s updates to the class not only keep safety a top priority following UNH and CDC protocols, but helps provide volunteers with science-based information, strategies, and tools to live more sustainably while addressing emerging issues including climate change and environmental justice. Other topics include:
- Tree Identification, Pruning, and Planting and Care
- Creating Ecologically Friendly Landscapes
- Improving Habitat for Native Wildlife, including Pollinators
- Permaculture Skills and Strategies
- Invasive Species Management
- Protecting and Building Living Soils
- Tree Inventory & Maintenance for Communities
- Water Quality Improvement and Innovative Stormwater Strategies
- Reading the Forest and NH's Changing Landscape
- Volunteer Roles & Opportunities in Your Community
The program itself is self-sustaining by offering an ongoing community support system to Steward volunteers. This system provides peer support, continuing education, and networking opportunities. In addition, the class can be taken for college credit through NHTI -Concord’s Community College.”
Graduates then volunteer in their communities, caring for natural resources through projects of their choosing. The reported activities span across 40 categories ranging from planting natives to restoring forest systems, creating habitat for the endangered species, growing food and creating community gardens. Stewards also worked on conservation projects, permanently protecting vital wetlands, forests and farmland. Others began teaching youth and adults about wildlife and pollinators
The program open to all, is especially helpful for those volunteering on conservation commissions, tree committees, or watershed associations, and for those who maybe aren’t sure yet how they can help but want to make a difference.
Space is limited, the sooner you apply the better your chances of making it into the program. There is a $345 registration fee but scholarships are available, so don’t let the cost stop you from applying! Apply now online at nhstewards.org
For more information visit nhstewards.org. The Natural Resources Stewards Program is sponsored by UNH Cooperative Extension and the NH Division of Forests and Lands, in partnership with NH Fish and Game Department and its Wonders of Wildlife Program, U.S. Forest Service, in partnership with the Natural Resources Conservation Service and County Conservation Districts, NHTI – Concord’s Community College and Canterbury Shaker Village.