January Volunteer Recap: A great start to the New Year! | Cal Parks

January Volunteer Recap: A great start to the New Year!

Published: February 10, 2022

We kicked off the new year by mobilizing 202 volunteers who dedicated 706 hours of service to state parks all over California! When our volunteers commit their time and efforts to parks, they are contributing to help fight climate change, help to protect nature and wildlife, and contribute to real needs parks and their staff request to be addressed immediately that make a difference. We can’t thank our volunteers enough for their commitment to protecting and preserving our parks. 

January Impact:

January Monthly Recap Volunteerism: 9 workdays   108,200 square feet of invasive species removed    2,084 native plants planted

Monarch Workdays 

During December 2021 and January 2022, we hosted four successful volunteer workdays at Natural Bridges State Beach and Lighthouse Field State Beach to protect wildlife and nature. We had 137 volunteers show their support to overwintering monarch butterflies by removing 600 square feet of invasive species and planting 3,519 native plants. This critical work increases the biodiversity and ecological resilience of the parks impacted by climate change. It also provides food and habitat for the threatened western monarch butterfly population which has plunged dramatically over the past decade.   

Volunteers at Natural Bridges State Beach for a Monarch workday.

Special thank you to Parks Project for sending us fun raffle prizes to provide to our volunteers! It was a great way to start our January monarch workdays. 

“I very much enjoy the volunteer opportunities. The work is meaningful, staff is always welcoming, enthusiastic and informative, and other volunteers are always an interesting group.” - Natural Bridges State Beach Volunteer 

Fort Ord Dunes State Park  

On January 15, 2022, over 20 incredible volunteers removed a total of 10,000 square feet of invasive species such as ice plants. Their impact helps protect and restore important habitats and wildlife that call Fort Ord Dunes State Park home – such as the Smith’s blue butterfly, globose dune beetle, California legless lizard, and western snowy plover. 

Volunteers at Fort Ord Dunes State Park

Special thank you to the eight Bridge Restoration Ministries volunteers who joined our workday! You all made an impact. 

“I did find myself enjoying the company of the people working side by side with me focused on the common goal of cleaning up in an effort to restore the beauty to the coastline.” - Mark Shaw, Fort Ord Dunes State Park Volunteer.  

Join our next volunteer workday at Fort Ord Dunes State Park or Garrapata State Park!  

Candlestick Point State Recreation Area 

On January 19, 2022, 10 volunteers joined our workday event at the Yosemite Slough portion of Candlestick Point State Recreation Area. Volunteers removed 3,200 square feet of invasive species and planted 43 native plants around the living shoreline we constructed at Yosemite Slough. Living shorelines are effective nature-based solutions that use plants, sand, rocks, or other natural elements to address problems of sea level rise and stabilize the coast. They are an innovative, cost-effective technique that can enhance the quality, beauty, and biodiversity of the shoreline, as well as reduce flooding and coastal erosion. 

Volunteer at Candlestick Point State Recreation Area

Special thank you to rockstar volunteer, Madilynn – who planted 16 coastal sage scrub and gum plants during the workday! This was her first time planting a plant.   

“As a homeschool/unschool family, we take pride in knowing that we’re helping solve real-world problems rather than theories! We’re helping the world rebuild by helping and lending a hand any way we can...we answer the call…nature’s call, to help her heal and repair. To rebuild and restore what was once hers. We’re grateful to have had such a humbling experience, and we would highly recommend volunteering today” - Nathan Young, Candlestick Point State Recreation Volunteer  

Join our next Candlestick Point State Recreation Area workday! 


Let’s continue the momentum throughout 2022: check out our calendar to see what workdays are around your area: volunteer.calparks.org.