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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

    Volunteer citizen scientists help us collect data and observations on a changing Casco Bay. One of the most valuable aspects of our Citizen Steward Program has always been spatial coverage—with all of you deployed all around the Bay, we are able to learn things that we would not otherwise.
    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.
    You can help Friends of Casco Bay improve and protect the environmental health of our coastal waters by being informed about the issues we are working on. Our Bay Papers make it easy! By reaching out to your neighbors, colleagues, friends, and family, you can be a Champion for the health of the Bay.
    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

 

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:

The looming question for the future— How is Casco Bay changing?

December 6, 2017

We see water itself as fundamental habitat. When water quality deteriorates, eelgrass, plankton, clams, and other marine creatures suffer. Thanks to our 25-year data set on water quality in Casco Bay, we now have a better overall understanding of the health of the Bay. We understand when and which areas… Read more

What we have learned from 25 years of water quality data

December 6, 2017

Since 1992, more than 650 volunteers have gotten their hands wet in our Citizen Stewards Water Quality Monitoring Program, complementing the work of our staff scientists in assessing the environmental health of Casco Bay. This science is the foundation of much of our community engagement and advocacy efforts. Volunteer Citizen… Read more

Volunteer Appreciation & Annual Member’s Meeting

November 20, 2017

Volunteer Appreciation Celebration & 2018 Annual Members Meeting Join us as we recognize those who help us protect the health of Casco Bay. We will provide the updated Casco Bay Health Index based on data collected by volunteer Citizen Stewards over the past 25 years, and we will share new… Read more