Deputy Secretary of Agriculture Kathleen Merrigan recently visited Viroqua, Wisc. to promote USDA’s new Know Your Farmer, Know Your Food Compass. While she was there, she took the time to meet with Timothy Bennish, a volunteer with USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) Earth Team volunteer program.
NRCS works with farmers and ranchers to implement voluntary conservation practices that will not only protect the nation’s natural resources, but also maintain or increase the productivity of the land. Read more »
Adria Smith started working with NRCS as a student volunteer. She is now a student trainee soil conservationist.
I first heard about Earth Team, the volunteer workforce of the USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) from Eric Banks, the Kansas State Conservationist. Our families go to the same church, and he spoke with my mother about the Earth Team program, recommending I look into getting involved with it. Read more »
Volunteers on the Talladega National Forest work to help keep forest recreation areas like the Pine Glen campgrounds clean and ready for visitors. U.S. Forest Service photo.
Volunteers play an integral part in helping the Forest Service reach its annual goals in managing healthy national forests. And on Alabama’s Talladega National Forest, three exceptional volunteers have dedicated countless hours towards this work: John Calhoun, Ray Bittle and Charles Laminack. Read more »
Twice a week, Susan Anderson volunteers a morning or afternoon at the USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) in Big Rapids, Mich. She calls it “giving back.” As a member of NRCS’ Earth Team, the agency’s volunteer workforce, Anderson assists clients, files and helps staff inventory and analyze the resource concerns of area farmers and landowners.
Anderson started volunteering with NRCS seven years ago, shortly after retiring from the Michigan Department of Education, where she was director of School Support Services, with statewide responsibilities and a budget of $500 million a year. She administered Michigan’s non-academic education programs, including child nutrition, food distribution, drivers’ education and pupil transportation. Read more »
When landowners have resource problems, they turn to USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) and our conservation partners. And when NRCS has challenges, we often turn to our Earth Team volunteers for help. Our more than 30,000 volunteers assist us with conservation planning and technical consultation, outreach and communications, clerical services and hundreds of other tasks.
This is National Volunteer Week and it is the perfect time to recognize our Earth Team volunteers. They do a lot for this agency and our national landscape: They work shoulder-to-shoulder with our conservationists, partners and technicians. They make us a more productive and effective agency and they help create a climate where private lands conservation can continue to succeed. Read more »