START A CANYON FRIENDS GROUP
Building Canyon/Creek Friends Groups
To build a new canyon Friends group, we start with an educational tour. We distribute, door to door, 1,000-3,000 invitations to a free educational tour in the neighborhood canyon. At these events we collect names and contacts for those interested in the Friends Group. Tour guides include SD Canyonlands staff as well as knowledgeable volunteers and experts in native plants and San Diego wildlife.
We later invite tour participants and other local residents and stakeholders surrounding the canyon to attend an organizational meeting of the new Friends Group. At these meetings we train and enroll leaders. The attendees take on a variety of responsibilities.
We help the friends groups plan and implement clean-ups and restoration events, often providing tools, donating native plants, and recruiting additional volunteers. Professional consultants volunteer to help establish habitat restoration plans. We help groups coordinate with authorities such as Park Rangers, on creating Canyon Enhancement Plans.
Eventually these groups function on their own to perform these and other duties to care for their local canyons.
Support for Friends Groups
Another goal of San Diego Canyonlands is to develop services for Canyon Friends groups in order to help them function effectively, efficiently, and sustainably to achieve their canyon enhancement goals. SDCL will work to increase efficiency by providing a central source for a variety of expertise and essential resources. Resources include tools, extra volunteers for projects, coordination with City Rangers, restoration techniques, and possibly professional restoration consultants. We offer outreach and educational support as well as continued effort to build the volunteer and member support of each Friends Group.
We are working to re-launch a County-Wide Canyons Coalition and facilitate routine meetings where the individual groups get together, share concerns, resources and information, and support each others efforts. The groups will let their collective voices be heard when individual canyons are threatened. Please contact us if you would like to get involved.