Thursday, May 2, 2013

Bonnie Thompson - Sweet Springs May Volunteer Spotlight

Our May 2013 Sweet Springs Volunteer Spotlight is on Bonnie Thompson of Los Osos, CA. She has been a volunteer at Sweet Springs since 2009.

What made you decide to start volunteering at Sweet Springs?
"For years, I'd been meaning to give back to the community in some way, and it finally it came down to the question, If not now, when? And then once I went, I was hooked."

What keeps you coming back?
"The incredible progress that's been made is a real draw--the preserve has literally been transformed. In a way, it's a creative process, almost like a work of art."

What has been your most memorable experience?
"My most memorable experience happens time and again and yet always amazes me. During large work parties, made up of different groups of people and individuals, most of whom don't know one another, everyone magically merges into a seamlessly working whole. For instance, on a planting day, some people start digging holes for plants, others run off to collect mulch for the new plants, others take on the invaluable chore of filling gallon jugs of water so that the new plantings don't dry out and in two or three hours, a huge area that was bare sand is filled with verdant native plants."

Do you have any words of wisdom for first-time volunteers?
"First timers: Just give it a shot, and if you're unsure about anything, feel free to ask someone who's been around or looks more experienced, we're always happy for a chance to stand around and shoot the breeze!"

What do you do when you're not volunteering?
"I'm a freelance book editor, so that takes up most of my days. Then there's running or biking or working out at the gym, and just traveling around this great county with my husband, Chuck, and our crazy little dog."

We are very lucky to have an outstanding group of volunteers that help us maintain and enhance the preserve throughout the year. Some people can only manage to join us for a single day and we are more than happy with that. We value all contributions of time, large and small, but we do have a special regard for those who have taken Sweet Springs under their wing and volunteer time and time again. There are many people who have invested tremendous amounts of sweat equity in the preserve and have made it what it is today. We would like you to meet some of them and we highlight a special volunteer every month....