Ever wonder who makes our parks look so spiffy? There’s a good chance a Community Forester is looking after those trees in your neighborhood hangout. The Community Forester Program started in 2003 as a partnership between The Park People and Denver Parks & Recreation. These volunteers serve as ambassadors, educators, and mentors to other volunteers. Most importantly, they plant and care for trees that everyone can enjoy (not to mention, your own yard will never look scraggly again).

In 2010, the program was revamped and expanded to provide more in-depth training. To be a Community Forester, volunteers must complete a series of four half-day workshops: Trees 101, Tree Pruning, Tree Identification and Inventory, and Tree Planting and Health. Then, if they choose, they can take the Volunteer Leadership and Management workshop free of charge (the other workshops cost $20 each). You can still volunteer if you don’t take the entire series, you just won’t have Community Forester status.

Once they’ve completed the program, Community Foresters help The Park People and Denver Forestry monitor and care for trees. Other activities include: pruning at traffic signs and sidewalks, neighborhood canvases where they look for places to plant trees in the community, park and neighborhood planting projects, and tree health assessments.

Get Involved: Registration for the spring session is happening now through mid-February. Contact Program Manager Kim Yuan-Farrell at 303-722-6262 or kim@theparkpeople.org for more information.

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