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Commitment

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For those of us who volunteer. Not just for a few hours. For the long haul. Those of us who dedicate dozens of hours, if not hundreds, in some cases.

Yesterday I saw three different groups at work. One, doing gardening. One, readying a food bank site. And one, helping influence our next generations, at an Extreme Weather conference for 9th graders.

I got to the Conservancy at 8AM. There were about a dozen of us supporting the 3rd annual weather conference. For 9th graders from four local high schools. I greeted a bus from Long Reach and then watched the Office of Emergency Management bring in their Command Center.

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While we were setting up, a half dozen volunteers arrived for the regularly scheduled Wednesday morning drop in gardening session. They were working on the herb gardens outside the historic farm buildings on the site.

We, at the time, all 12 of us volunteers, were getting ready to host the various stations that the students would visit. I got to moderate the Tree Maintenance station, manned by Bartlett Tree Service.

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They were giving a demonstration on how they take care of trees, those damaged by the weather, and those that are healthy, to protect them from high winds and other weather events.

Marty Adams and Victor Nakashima captured the interest of the students, with their stories, their information, and that climbing ability of Victor.

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They were impressed with the bucket truck, as well.

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Lots of fun questions. From fear of heights, to animal attacks, to foul weather gear, to what is an arborist, the students were engaged and interested.

After six hours there, I headed over to the Food Bank garden site. Where three volunteers were still planting spring plants in the newly tilled plots. They had been there since 10 am, when my husband came out to till the plots. The other volunteers, part of a core group that donates dozens of hours to food bank plot maintenance and harvest, were still hard at work.

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Today as I popped out to Sharps for a few things, I found that a food bank volunteer had been there picking out warm weather seedlings. Next week they will be planted. Our first harvest will be the end of May.

One day. Two dozen volunteers. I am so impressed with the commitment of my fellow Howard Countians, who donate their time tirelessly, doing what they love to do.

I’m working on recruiting Marty to be a subject matter expert at our May BioBlitz at Belmont. He would be such an asset with his knowledge of plants, trees and insects.

Have you made a commitment? Do you give some time or effort in areas that interest you?

About AnnieRie

Retired, I am following my dream of living in quiet west Howard County, a rural oasis, not far from the urban chaos, but just far enough. I love to cook, bake, garden, and travel. I volunteer at Howard County Conservancy. I lead nature hikes, manage programs and show children all the wonders of nature, and the agricultural connection to their food.

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