Audubon Rockies was excited to team up with Colorado Native Plant Society and High Plains Environmental Center to offer a workshop series, Wildscape Ambassadors. In fact, we had so much interest in the workshops that we had to create additional ones. Today we have even more passionate and skilled community members making a positive change for local wildlife, big and small ... because one person can make a difference!
WILDSCAPE AMBASSADOR: 101
Within 12 months of launching the Wildscape Ambassador 101 workshop in December 2016, we had conducted 10 workshops across WY and CO, including one at the National Audubon Society convention in Park City, UT. These 2-3 hour ‘Train-the-Trainer’ workshops prepared volunteers to spread the word about restoring natural habitats for birds, butterflies, and other pollinators by implementing water-wise and native gardens. Participants walked away with connections to a broad network of similarly passionate individuals and a variety of useful resources. Altogether, we trained and certified 286 ‘Wildscape Ambassadors.’ We are extremely encouraged to report that following these trainings, 22 volunteers led 32 events and presentations across 9 counties in Colorado and reached over 860 individuals! We thank them for giving their time and resources as collectively they drove over 1,400 miles and volunteered more than 200 hours!
WILDCAPE AMBASSADOR: 201
Inspired by participants of 101 workshops, we created new trainings to further advance skills. Six Wildscape Ambassador 201 trainings occurred in the fall of 2017, reaching 194 individuals. This series presented more comprehensive how-to approaches – including understanding the ecology of a site (including the unique relationships between native plants and their insect counterparts) and plant terminology, tools for finding suitable vendors, providing instruction on design techniques, and giving guidance for long-term maintenance of native plant gardens. At the completion, participants were invited to a celebration, where outstanding individuals were recognized for their contributions.
MAKING A DIFFERENCE LOCALLY: 16 TOTAL WORKSHOPS & 480 AMBASSADORS TRAINED!
These ambassadors inspire real, local solutions that benefit wildlife and improve our communities. As informed and confident advocates, they are now equipped to take conversations further and become a resource for others by hosting presentations, talking to elected officials and encouraging their communities to take actions to protect birds. By making a difference and encouraging people to create bird-friendly backyards, volunteering at planting events or restoration projects, they are making a tangible difference for birds, bees and wildlife found within and alongside our growing towns and cities.
“Audubon Rockies' Train-the-Trainer Workshop provides information and excitement to volunteerswho want to inspire others to foster functioning ecosystems in their yards. Individuals can make a huge difference for wildlife. Plant it and they will come!"
- David Julie, Outreach & Education Coordinator, CO Native Plant Society
And a big thank you to our valued sponsor, High Country Gardens!