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This page is devoted to the management of volunteer programs at the federal level, including information for parks, justice, Internal Revenue Service, and more.

~ July 2005 ~ Topics

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Interagency Volunteerism

The four federal land agencies: Bureau of Land Management, US Fish and Wildlife Service, US Forest Service, and National Park Service, have been working together since 1999 to develop collaborative programs and projects that enhance services to the public, improve the stewardship of the federal lands and increase the efficiency and effectiveness of their management activities.

These agencies have entered into a unique interagency partnership to collaborate more effectively, to create efficiencies, and to complete projects funded by the 1998 Southern Nevada Public Land Management Act (SNPLMA) with University of Nevada, Las Vegas (UNLV). As land is sold, the agencies put in nominations for projects fitting these purposes for approval by the Secretary of the Interior. Many projects are being carried out in partnership with community stakeholders. In 2003, the agencies began discussions with UNLV about partnering with the university to carry out selected projects.

The purpose of the Interagency Volunteer Program is to:

  • Develop and administer a central clearinghouse and single point of contact for public lands volunteers.
  • Develop a joint volunteer recruitment process with a single database, website and application forms.
  • Develop joint volunteer training programs.
  • Connect volunteers and volunteer groups with specific land management projects such as litter clean-up, research, restoration, outdoor education, invasive weed removal, trail maintenance, native plant propagation, site stewardship, etc.
  • Train interagency volunteer project leaders.
  • Develop coordinated volunteer recognition programs.

The partnership with UNLV provides the federal land-management agencies with additional capacity to manage and carry out selected projects in environmental education, science, research, volunteerism, preservation, restoration, and conservation.

So far, two strong volunteer programs that help the public lands that were developed with at the establishment of the partnership are:

  • Cultural Site Stewardship Program: Developing and implementing a volunteer program to help the land management agencies monitor and protect cultural resources.
  • Get Outdoors Nevada: Developing an interagency volunteer program, which consolidates database management, recruitment, training, and recognition of volunteers for all four federal land management agencies. This program sponsors volunteer events throughout the year on the public lands.

Nevada continues to lead the nation in population growth, with Clark County identified as one of the fastest growing areas in America. As large numbers of new residents move into the area, new pressures emerge on the natural landscape. Volunteerism is one way to tie the people to the resource, our public lands.

Interested in more information? Check out our online bookstore for: "Megatrends in Volunteerism," by Sue Vineyard.Megatrends in Volunteerism Book Image

This month's article was submitted by Nancy Bernard. She can be contacted by email at: nancy_bernard@nps.gov.
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