Thank you for your interest in volunteering with the Southeast Michigan Land Conservancy. As a not-for-profit organization, we rely on volunteers to help us accomplish our mission. Whether you want to help us take care of our Nature Preserves, raise money to save more land, or educate Michigan communities about the importance of land conservation, there are many opportunities to make a difference right here in southeast Michigan. Read on to learn more about getting involved as an individual or as part of a group!
An SMLC Stewardship Work Day is a great way to get involved with the Conservancy and to meet other people with an interest in conservation. Throughout the year, Conservancy staff and volunteers participate in Stewardship Work Days at locations around southeast Michigan to remove invasive species, clean up trash, maintain trails, and help with a variety of other hands-on jobs in order to care for the land we protect.
Stewardship Work Days are listed on our Calendar of Events, and we always welcome extra hands! The Conservancy also maintains an email list to notify people about our work days and other public events.
For more information about SMLC Volunteer Stewardship work days, please contact:
Often, local businesses, clubs, schools, or other community groups make arrangements to schedule their own service project with the Conservancy. A Group Service Project always offers camaraderie, fresh air, open spaces, and the chance to make a big difference in a short amount of time. We almost always have a special stewardship project that can be tailored to various group sizes and abilities. Perhaps your own organization would like to schedule a Group Service Project and help make a difference in the community.
For more information about SMLC Service Projects, please contact:
The SMLC Board of Directors has established five Standing Committees to assist with setting goals and plan projects to carry out the mission of saving land in southeast Michigan. Committee members have a background or involvement in the topic the committee works on (except for Executive which is limited to board directors only). If you have a background or are currently involved in finance, land protection, or farming and are interested in being considered for committee membership, please let us know. The five SMLC Standing Committees are:
* Land Protection
* Event Planning
For more information about SMLC Committees, please contact:
SMLC currently has two Local Chapters. These are groups made up of people from specific communities who are dedicated to carrying out the work of the Conservancy on a more local level. Volunteers work with the Conservancy staff and Board of Directors to plan and implement projects to save land, care for land, and help with fundraising in their local area.
For more information about SMLC Local Chapters, please contact:
Perhaps you have a special skill or talent you would like to offer, or maybe you are hoping to build some skills through volunteer service. If you want to help the Conservancy, the Conservancy can use your help! We would especially like help in the following areas:
- Preserve Watcher - All SMLC preserves need to be visited and watched over regularly for problems that arise from both humans and nature. Responsibilities include periodic inspection rounds, maintenance of trails, and monthly reporting to Conservancy staff.
Preserve Watchers: click here for a Preserve Activity Reporting Form.
- Preserve Naturalist - What makes a particular SMLC preserve a special and unique place? If you would like to find answers to that question then consider becoming a preserve naturalist. Preserve Naturalists survey, inventory and document the natural features within each preserve and report on how the preserve functions within the greater environment.
- Conservancy Farm Stewardship - The Conservancy office is located on an historic old farm property between Detroit and Ann Arbor, so there is always something to do with building up-keep, preservation, tool maintenance, or grounds keeping. Come help out and see what the place is like - volunteering to mow the lawn is a tremendous way to help – really, it is! If you have skills in this area, the Conservancy Farm could use your help!
- Outreach Volunteer - This is a great way to help raise SMLC's visibility, build our supporter base, and get out the word about SMLC and the land conservation movement. There are several opportunities to volunteer for tabling events at green fairs and festivals throughout the region. We have a list of events at which it would be good for SMLC to attend and possibly have a display. You decide how many events you would like to attend (volunteering for even just one can be very helpful). SMLC staff will get you up to speed and provide all materials.
- Bird House Steward - There are nearly 100 bird houses for various birds on SMLC preserves, and each needs routine attention to ensure they remain inviting to the species we are trying to attract. Responsibilities include light-duty repair work, clean-out of debris at critical times during the year, and nesting activity reports to the Conservancy. SMLC staff will get you up to speed on what you need to know to help the birds!
- Photography - Here’s a great excuse to take your camera for a nice walk out in nature. The Conservancy always needs great photos that showcase wonderful nature preserves for historical documentation, promotional materials, and for the website.
- Office Support - We are always looking for a few good people who can help with mailings, prepare for Conservancy events, or light office tasks during regular business hours. If you have free time during the day – even once in a while - you can contribute a great amount to the overall mission of SMLC.
- Expert Assistance - The Conservancy would benefit greatly from participation by people willing to volunteer specialty skills such as: grant researcher/writer, naturalist, ecologist, nature writer, geologist, hydrologist, GIS specialist, real estate specialist, property surveyor, and mitigation counselor.
If you have a skill or applicable experience that you would like to offer in service of Southeast Michigan Land Conservancy, please let us know! For more information about volunteering as an individual, please contact: