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Posts Tagged: Volunteers

Celebrating volunteers and 5 million hours donated to the program!

The UC Master Gardener Program is open to anyone interested in becoming a volunteer and sharing gardening knowledge with the public. (Photo credit: Evett Kilmartin © UC Regents)
Every day, UC Master Gardener volunteers make a difference in communities across California. These incredible volunteers give their time to mentor, teach, and inspire the people around them to adopt more sustainable gardening practices. These newly taught skills and information based on university research makes for healthier plants, environments and communities - the core values of the UC Master Gardener Program.

All of the success of the UC Master Gardener Program is due to the hard work and dedication of its volunteers, for this we would like to say a sincere THANK YOU for all you do!

Volunteers make a difference

Volunteer hours focus on services and outreach to the general public, sharing research-based information about water conservation, green waste reduction, pest management, and sustainable gardening practices. UC Master Gardeners are creating healthier communities and gardeners through their love for gardening and hours of volunteer service.

Last year 6,237 active UC Master Gardener volunteers donated 328,540 hours. (Photo credit:Evett Kilmartin © UC Regents)
Thousands of hours every week are spent planning and hosting workshops, teaching at demonstration gardens, working with school administrators and community garden leaders, answering gardening questions from phone calls, emails and online, and so much more. Whether in person, on the phone, in the media or online UC Master Gardeners are making a lasting impact.

Impacts by the numbers

Last year 6,237 volunteers gave their time and shared their talents, resources and gardening knowledge with communities across California. From July 1, 2015 to June 30, 2016 more than 328,540 hours were donated, a monetary value worth more than $9 million. It is hard to put a value to the service volunteers make for the program, but over the course of our 35 year history more than 5 million volunteer hours have been donated worth more than $137 million to California.

“This year we celebrate hitting the impressive 5 million volunteer hour's milestone,” says Missy Gable, statewide director. “We are so proud of the UC Master Gardener Program and its volunteers and the incredible work they do across the state. This hour milestone represents thousands of volunteers giving their valuable time, horticulture knowledge and sharing their passion about sustainable home gardening with their friends, neighbors and communities.” 

Telling our story by reporting

Volunteers extend research based information on home horticulture, pest management, and sustainable landscape practices. (Photo credit: Evett Kilmartin © UC Regents)
The growth and support of our program into the future depends on telling our story through reported contacts, hours and impact numbers. As the UC Master Gardener Program works toward building financial security for all counties in the state we encourage volunteers to record all volunteer hours and contacts in the Volunteer Management System (VMS) to ensure efforts are accurately captured and reported. Program activity is compiled at the county and state offices and reported not only to the County Boards of Supervisors but to the University, state and federal governments. We are proud to share our collective accomplishments and aim to be a leader within volunteer communities.

We look forward to reaching our next hour milestone together, a sincere thank you to our incredible group of volunteers, for sharing their passion and valuable time with the UC Master Gardener Program!

Posted on Monday, December 5, 2016 at 3:10 PM
Tags: Hours (2), Service (1), Volunteers (7)

Recognizing Volunteers for All They Contribute This Earth Day

UC Master Gardeners in the perennial garden at the “Garden of the Sun” in Fresno, Calif. Photo credit: Janet Cangemi, UCCE Master Gardener Program Fresno County

2015 marks the 45th anniversary of Earth Day, which is celebrated by more than 1 billion people worldwide. The national theme for this year's Earth Day is It's Our Turn to Lead, a phrase that directly describes the more than 6,000 UC Master Gardener volunteers actively leading in their local communities.

UC Master Gardener volunteer and coordinator answering questions at a local Farmer’s Market. Photo Credit: UCCE Master Gardener Program of San Joaquin County
UC Master Gardeners are passionate about conserving water, protecting the environment, managing pest, and most importantly love plants! Last year, UC Master Gardeners donated 385,260 volunteer hours to the program's mission of extending research-based home horticulture information to the public.

UC Master Gardeners are critical in supporting UC Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources' (UC ANR) strategic initiatives for healthy communities, healthy environments and healthy plants across the state of California.

“UC Master Gardener volunteers represent the most passionate and dedicated group of people I have encountered,”  said Missy Gable, statewide director of the UC Master Gardener Program, “they are enthusiastic about sharing their knowledge of research-based gardening information with the public and their commitment of time to this practice is both generous and inspiring.  UC Master Gardeners are an unbelievable resource for all residents in California and I want to recognize their efforts this Earth Day.  Volunteers are taking the lead to provide sound advice to CA gardeners as we all work to use water appropriately, connect to our food systems and protect our environment.”

Join us on Earth Day 2015!

Perhaps you've seen your local UC Master Gardeners answering questions at the Farmer's Market or you've read an article by a volunteer in your local paper.  If the 45th anniversary of Earth Day has inspired you to become more active with your environment, consider connecting with your local UC Master Gardener Program. 

Sample of UC Master Gardener Events Happening Across the State the Week of Earth Day:

UC Master Gardener volunteers receive University training in horticulture from experts in the field, mostly UC Cooperative Extension Advisors and Specialists.  In exchange for training, UC Master Gardener volunteers extend research-based information on sustainable home horticulture practices to the public. Whether you are looking to reduce your landscape water use, grow tomatoes or even become a UC Master Gardener yourself, volunteers are ready to help you.  Find a program or event near you!

Posted on Monday, April 20, 2015 at 8:58 AM

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