Our volunteers are back to work and asking for more! Our Texas Master Naturalist Volunteers are dedicated to natural resource conservation work, but as a result of extreme circumstances during the pandemic our members were limited in conducting many of their typical outreach, technical guidance and community stewardship service projects which limited their ability to obtain their required volunteer service hours. When the health and safety restrictions of the pandemic persisted we thought outside of the box and developed the TMN Virtual Volunteer Fair (VVF) as an opportunity for our partner conservation organizations to present service projects that needed volunteers from a distance or virtually! After two successful TMN VVF events our members are asking for more! This time with the intent to provide virtual service during the hottest months of the year when service in the field becomes less desirable and hits a typical lull until cooler months come around.
The Virtual Volunteer Fair will be an opportunity for our partner conservation organizations to present volunteer service projects that need volunteers from a distance or virtually! Save the Date and plan to join us on August 31st & September 1st 2021, for this series of project presentations showcasing opportunities from across the state and across the spectrum of natural resource topics.
Call for Projects!
Have a project idea but need help doing it? Do you have field data to collect? Computer research to do? If it can be done by volunteers, we can help!
Our volunteers are ready to volunteer! Our Texas Master Naturalist Volunteers are dedicated to natural resource conservation work, but as a result of extreme circumstances due to the pandemic our members have been limited in conducting many of their typical outreach, technical guidance and community stewardship service projects. This has limited their ability to obtain their required volunteer service hours. With health and safety restrictions persisting, we’re thinking outside of the box for how Texas Master Naturalist volunteers can assist our partner conservation organizations in their communities.
We are seeking your “Virtual” and “Distanced Service” project opportunities to add to our Texas Master Naturalist Program’s “Virtual Volunteer Service Fair”! You will present your project(s) online to our statewide membership of Texas Master Naturalist volunteers on August 31st or September 1st, 2021 with short 5-9 minute spotlight presentations to highlight the tasks, expertise and help you need. We will offer time during the event to answer questions and opportunities for volunteers to sign up too! *Note, presentations will run on 10-minute time blocks, if you would like time for Q&A, please consider keeping your presentation under 9 minutes. Volunteers will be able to sign up for projects during the event.
Consider this when developing your project ideas – How could a natural resource trained volunteer help ease your workload or fulfill virtual tasks? Master Naturalists are seeking more ways to volunteer virtually during the hottest months of the year. Try to connect their training and skills with your project needs that can be completed by volunteers working remotely 3 to 5 hours a week.
Project Host Resources
Project Host and Presenter – you will be given a 10-minute time slot in the Virtual Volunteer Fair to present your project, using our template to highlight the tasks, expertise and help you need. We will offer time during the event to answer questions and sign up volunteers too. The skeleton PPT template for you to use during your presentation is downloadable here: Virtual-Volunteer-Fair-PowerPoint-Template-2021Download
During our February 2021 Virtual Volunteer Fair, we offered a wonderful session on “Managing Texas Master Naturalist Volunteers in Person and Virtually” by Lindsay Pannell (Palo Duro State Park Interpreter) and Louisa Torrance (Distance Learning Coordinator). They shared how to create a successful recruiting presentation and plan and how to manage the volunteers that want to help you with your project(s). Their tips, techniques, and best practices working with TMN volunteers in distanced and virtual service projects can be viewed below, as well as the slides used:
As an attending Texas Master Naturalist what can I expect?
Get ready to volunteer!
The Texas Master Naturalists is hosting its third Virtual Volunteer Fair over a two day period this fall : Tuesday August 31st & Wednesday September 1st, 2021 from 9:00am to 12:00pm* (Central) each day with a series of 10-minute sessions highlighting projects by a variety of partner conservation agencies and organizations.
Sessions will be recorded and uploaded to our website post-event for those who cannot attend the live presentations. *Final time and agenda will be shared as the event approaches.
How do I join?
Registration to attend our Virtual Volunteer Fair will open later this summer! It will be free to register for either of the days or for both days but registration will be day specific so make sure you sign up for the day you want to attend! You can attend any or all project proposal presentations on either of the days – come and go as you please! TMN volunteers will earn Volunteer Service hours for attending all project proposal sessions – please use the “TMN Virtual Volunteer Service Fair” Statewide Project Opportunity for logging service hours.
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How do I Sign up to Volunteer?
At the completion of EACH project proposal and then again at the end of the event, we will share the “Project Volunteer Registration” survey.
Texas Master Naturalist Volunteers will use this survey link to select which Service Project(s) they are interested in volunteering with. This survey will stay open for the month of September, but the first pull of volunteer signup lists will be done on or around September 15th! Make sure and sign up early to ensure a quick turnaround time for our Project Hosts. Each Project Host will then receive their list of volunteers. From there, these Project Hosts will reach out to get the projects kicked off. Please note that in the event that a Project gets more volunteers than the Project Host can handle, he/she will make the call on how to manage and enlisting volunteers further for their project. Project service positions are not guaranteed.
How do I log Hours?
Texas Master Naturalists can earn hours for attending the Virtual Volunteer Fair and for participating in service projects presented during the fair. A VMS (Volunteer Management System) Quick Guide reference document has been created to help show these opportunities and how to log them: VMS Quick Guide
Have More Questions?
This is a new opportunity for us and for our volunteers – please let us know if you have any additional question. For questions, you can email: