Volunteers were Heroes in 2020
The only constant in 2020 was change. A LOT of it!
Despite all of the changes and challenges that 2020 brought, we are grateful for many dedicated volunteers who didn’t miss a beat.
Overall, volunteers logged ~18,000 hours, most of which was devoted to maintaining the Blue-Blazed Hiking Trails which experienced record attendance. At an estimated value of $25.43 per hour, that comes to over $450K!
Despite curtailing large work parties and in-person trainings, there were many notable accomplishments in 2020:
- In January, we changed our volunteer reporting system to a new Portal offered by Galaxy Digital. We continue work to ensure “the Portal” becomes as easy as possible for volunteers to use and chronicle their time and effort.
- Trails Day leaders developed amazing video postcards from their favorite hiking spot to inspire us all to hit the trails.
- Our Summer Trail Crew became a crew of 2 (one staff and one intern) instead of the usual 5 young crew members. The “Crew of 2” were tremendously productive and covered a lot of ground despite being few in number.
- In August, windstorms & Hurricane Isaias brought down hundreds of trees across trails all over the state. Seasoned sawyers and support crews did incredible work to re-open trails.
- An Americorps crew also joined us in August and worked on 2 large projects to relocate a section of the Mattabesett Trail on Tri-Mountain and extend the Quinnipiac Trail.
- The extension to the Quinnipiac Trail added 3.4 miles to the northern end bringing the trail to a conserved area known as Kathan Woods in Prospect. Volunteers pitched in to blaze and clear this new section of trail.
- A chronically muddy area on the NET/Metacomet Trail in Farmington had an extensive hardening project (nearly) completed. A dedicated cohort has contributed hundreds of person hours to this project (a.k.a. the Farmington turnpike project).
We are hopeful that 2021 will be another great year for volunteers despite ongoing challenges related to COVID-19, and we thank all of the volunteers who continue to inspire us at CFPA every day!