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Join us as a volunteer

Join our community of volunteers to help keep Casco Bay blue. Use the form below to sign up to be a volunteer today!

Casco Bay belongs to all of us and it takes a community to protect our coastal waters. Share your skills—and learn new ones—by donating your time. We’d love to partner with you in our work to protect the Bay we all love and enjoy.

Questions? Email us at volunteer [at] cascobay [dot] org

 

Volunteer Application

It takes a community to protect our coastal waters. Share your skills—and learn new ones—by donating your time. Volunteering is a great way to show that you are a true Friend of Casco Bay. Our volunteer application has around a dozen questions. Please consider reviewing the form completely to get a sense of it before starting it.
  • Opportunities for volunteering at Friends of Casco Bay

    The color of the Bay is an indicator of its health. In this new initiative, Volunteers will use a smartphone app to photograph and measure the color of Casco Bay. The data, along with location and time, become part of a worldwide catalog of water color.
    We are looking for Volunteers to help monitor nuisance outbreaks, using a smartphone app, or alternatively, a camera and a computer, to document, organize, and share their observations of the Bay. This summer, we will provide Volunteers with a training on algal blooms, including the good, bad, and the ugly, and then show them how to use our reporting tool.
    Coastal cleanups are a great way for families, students, and service groups to work together to take care of our fragile marine environment. These are scheduled on an as-needed basis.
    Storm Drain Stenciling is a hands‐on way for volunteers to "take to the streets" and create a greater awareness for reducing stormwater pollution. We loan storm drain stenciling kits to local groups with all the instructions and materials needed to host a stenciling effort in your community.
    BayScaping is an educational program on ecological lawn care practices, given to neighborhood associations, civic clubs, and other community groups. We need Master Gardeners and other “green thumbs” to assist at presentations at neighborhood gatherings, Portland Flower Show, and other events.
    Some of our special events include fundraising house parties, a summer institute for educators, and our annual Wild and Scenic Environmental Film Festival. We often need logistical support for these events such as: set up and clean up, food prep, photo documentation, ushering, etc.
    These tasks include entering detailed information into customized databases for our water quality monitoring or fundraising programs.
    The tasks include stuffing, stamping and sealing envelopes for fundraising mailings. We also often need help with hand addressing envelopes.
    For those who would like a longer, more self‐directed project, we have occasional opportunities for volunteers to research issues or practices that relate to some of our ongoing or future programs
  • Things you can include: Relevant work & volunteer experience, Educational Background, Skills, and Why are you interested in volunteering with us?

 

What do volunteers do?

More than 300 people volunteer their time with us every year, and these volunteers help us protect the Bay in a variety of ways, from cleaning up shorelines to stuffing envelopes.

Ongoing volunteer opportunities include:

Coastal Cleanups

Coastal cleanups are a great way for families, students, and service groups to work together to take care of our fragile marine environment. These are scheduled on an as-needed basis and usually take 2-4 hours. They are a great way to spend some time outside along the coastline, while also removing debris that can have a negative impact on Casco Bay.

Storm Drain Stenciling

Kids Storm Drain Stenciling
Stenciling storm drains is a great community service project. Photo from Friends School of Portland

Storm Drain Stenciling is a hands‐on way for volunteers to get outside and “take to the streets”. You will create a greater awareness for reducing stormwater pollution. We loan storm drain stenciling kits to local groups with all the instructions and materials needed to host a stenciling effort in your community.

 

Special Events like our Wild & Scenic Film Festival

Photo by Kyle Dubay

Our biggest event of the year is our Wild & Scenic Film Festival. To pull off big events like this, we need the help of volunteers. These events help us raise money and awareness about our work. As a volunteer you might greet guests, help set out materials, plate snacks, pour drinks, or usher.

Volunteers make the difference!

Our volunteers come from all walks of life. One thing they have in common is that they want to make a difference.

Deb Dawson shares why she volunteers with us: “I spend a lot of time sailing and kayaking on Casco Bay. The marine ecology is what draws me to sea kayaking and I see so many interesting things while exploring the shallow areas among the islands. I see the delicate balance of the ocean and am curious about the elements that make marine life possible. So contributing to the data collection that Friends of Casco Bay uses to monitor the health of the bay is very gratifying in many ways. I get to spend time near the water, actively participate in water sampling, learn about the scientific method, and know that I’m providing real data to help protect the delicate balance of life in Casco Bay.”

 

Carol Taylor, a volunteer who samples at Bethel Point in Harpswell, says, “The sea is where life began—we need to love it, respect it, and monitor its health! I love being part of something bigger, better than myself.”

 

 

Learn how others have helped and how you can help:

A New Way to Volunteer: Measure the Color of Casco Bay

June 7, 2018

From Homer’s “wine dark seas” to David Attenborough’s “Blue Planet,” the color of the ocean has held our fascination throughout the ages. People often consider blue water as a sign of a healthy ocean and dirty-brown water to indicate polluted water. Turns out, color is a valuable indicator of the… Read more

Your eyes on the Bay–new directions in citizen science

January 26, 2018

Casco Bay, like ocean waters around the world, is changing and changing quickly. We are evolving our water quality monitoring to stay on top of the science of how the Bay may be changing. At our Volunteer Appreciation Celebration this week [click here for photos!], we announced that we are launching… Read more

Friend of Casco Bay Award given to local advocates

January 26, 2018

Rick Frantz and Jennifer Fox are part of Portland’s vibrant waterfront scene. They own Andy’s Old Port Pub on Commercial Street, and they take the ferry home each night to Great Diamond Island. Casco Bay is literally their backyard. On January 23, as more than 125 volunteers and supporters of Friends of… Read more