Volunteer Opportunities for June and Beyond


heart of the community

Great American CleanUp Cleans Up

The final totals for this year’s Great American CleanUp are in. Sarasota’s phenomenal numbers, according to coordinator Wendi Crisp:
  • 680 volunteers
  • 6,371 lbs of trash
  • 1,500 volunteer hours
GACU s. Lido volunteers
GACU Volunteers at S. Lido

Million Dollar Volunteers

More data: County Volunteer Coordinator Vickie French has produced a PowerPoint presentation  about volunteer participation in Sarasota. Here’s just one page of it:
volunteer value

According to our calculation, that four-month period, if continued through the year, would add up to $4,326,612. That’s not chickenfeed. Thanks to all who enrich the community in so many ways. The complete presentation is here, and it can be found under “Documents” on theCounty’s Volunteer Page.

Englewood Community Garden: Turning Cisterns into Art

Lou Taft wrote:
On May 17th, a beautiful Friday evening, a multitude of volunteers of all ages converged at Buchan Airport Community Park for a painting party.
cra bar b q
The Arts Alliance of Lemon Bay had been asked to help with a project at the Englewood Community Garden and they partnered with The Open Studio, Earth T.A.S.K. Crew Summer Camp, Artists Acres andTerraNichol Academy to transform black and white cisterns into true works of art!
cistern fish
The CRA made the event more festive by providing grilled hot dogs, hamburgers and veggie burgers for the hungry crowd. The cisterns had been purchased and installed through a Neighborhood Grant provided by Sarasota County and this cooperative work party helped to complete Englewood Community Garden’s commitment of matching volunteer hours. TheEnglewood Community Garden is a Chapter of theFriends of Sarasota County Parks.
Students from Terranichol

Sarasota Bay Guardians

Here’s another Volunteer Opportunity:
sarasota bay estuary volunteers
From their site:
Sarasota Bay Guardians is a family-friendly volunteer program. . .. The Sarasota Bay Guardian Program was established to engage residents of all ages in the ongoing efforts to restore and protect Sarasota Bay. The program involves at least six Saturday morning volunteer outings each year throughout Sarasota and Manatee County. SBEP also partners with local schools and groups to provide volunteer support for planting native vegetation, removing debris, and removing exotic species of plants. SBEP Bay Guardians have donated thousands of hours to support the SBEP mission.

Noah Featured

susan noah
In a recent interview, Friends Board Member and Volunteer Susan Noah’s thoughts turned to parks: 

I get a lot of people who’ve been to Naples or Orlando and say, “I’ve never been to Sarasota, but people tell me it’s nice,” and that’s all they know.


The groups that are most surprised are families with children. The parents don’t think there is going to be anything for them in Sarasota, because they view it as a retirement place. So when they find out that we have good schools and that there are so many things for children to do – Mote Marine, the different zoos and parks, GWiz, summer programs – they are surprised that it’s such a family-friendly town.


Urban Green

In the same vein as Susan, County Administrator Randall H. Reid recently pointed to a piece in The Atlantic entitled Green Space Means More for Satisfaction Than a Neighborhood’s Average Income. The jist:


. . . people are generally happier when they have access to grass, trees, and flowers


Here’s a building in Tokyo called Vent Vert that uses greenery in its facade:


green building



Wednesdays at the Carlton Reserve 


t mabry carlton


Kenya Leonard organizes a team of regular Wednesday volunteers at the Carlton. If interested, email Kenya (KLeonard@scgov.net) to register.



SRQvolunteen is a local site created by high-schoolers that links volunteer opportunities to teens who are looking for them. SRQvolunteen has started an Event page on the site, which allows teens who prefer to volunteer on a one-time basis to be given a choice of events. If your organization has an upcoming event and needs teen volunteers, please email the event to us and we would be happy to display it on the site. Send your event toSRQvolunteen@yahoo.com.
Thank you and hope to hear from you soon,
Vanessa Rodriguez
President SRQvolunteen
  van side