Through the contributions of many volunteers, the programs we are able to offer and the impact we have had on the landscape has grown dramatically. Volunteers certainly make a difference!
If you enjoy working on the land, the fresh air, pitching in, and meeting other people with an interest in conservation, then check out one of these workdays! Just one work day makes a drastic visible difference on one of our sites; imagine the impact volunteers can have over the years!
Visit our calendar of events to see upcoming workdays, or click on the Bold Headers below for more information as well as descriptions and pictures of previous projects.
Click here to complete a brief Volunteer Profile to help us get to know you better!
Habitat Restoration Workdays:
Habitat Restoration Workdays take place most Saturdays, Sundays, and Wednesdays. No experience is necessary, and tools and refreshments are provided. Volunteers should dress in long pants and sturdy shoes. Activities will focus on eradicating invasive species from natural areas. All year long we cut brush such as buckthorn, honeysuckle, and small willows with both chainsaws and hand loppers. Volunteers can either cut or help build brush piles. In spring we pull garlic mustard by hand. In summer we will be cutting cattails 3 inches below the water surface by hand.
This project is focused on gathering information about local oaks. Volunteers will conduct surveys of oak size and health on private lands. They can either learn some of the basics about tree identification, working with landowners, and data collection from our training program, or can be paired with an experienced mentor.
Do you have an oak tree in your front yard, or do you know of one somewhere? You can collect the acorns after they mature and fall from the trees, and drop them off at TLC! Glacier Oaks Nursery then grows them, and these are the trees TLC uses for the oak plantings! There are instructions on how to sort and label the acorns on the Acorn Roundup webpage.
Do you enjoy planning events? Or maybe just attending exciting events? TLC's fall fundraiser--Art of the Land--involves planning and coordinating from February until the 2-day event in September. The result brings together talented artists, photographers, sponsors, performers and members for a spectacular event to raise funds that help TLC fulfill our mission. Volunteers are instrumental to the success of every event.
Native Shrub Growing Workdays
This spring we will begin to grow native shrubs from seeds gathered here in McHenry County by TLC and volunteers. We will be utilizing the facilities at Glacier Oaks Nursery in Harvard, and activities will include seed cleaning, germination, repotting, and propagating cuttings. In fall, these shrubs should be ready to be planted at natural areas in McHenry County! Let us know if you can help!
Seed Collecting Workdays
We occasionally need volunteers during business hours to help with mailings or prepare for events. If you have some free time during the day and would like to help with a project, let us know!