Help The Parks With Beach Access Issues … Volunteer

I reached out to the parks’ volunteer department.  Many people want to see the overcrowding issues and fake fishing stop on the drive on beaches.  One way you can help make a difference is to volunteer.  There is a benefits program for volunteers if you are interested.  The information below is what I received from  Glen Stubbolo, DCVA, CIG the Chief of Volunteer and Community Involvement.

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Delaware State Park rangers inspecting a surf fishing vehicle and training seasonals.

Park Watch Program
Park Watch is a program of our Enforcement Section , helping in a number of ways. The primary role is that of Ambassador, helping park users in a positive manner understand the policies and requirements so they can better experience and enjoy their park experience and not inhibit others from the same.  It is NOT an enforcement activity- members do not enforce park regulations or rules,- they explain the rule and the reason, encourage compliance but do not enforce or require compliance (that is role of our enforcement officers).

They (volunteers) help in many activities, from regular assignments- in this case helping with Surf checks, but also with special events and educational opportunities as they are available and interested in doing so.

To Participate?
Interested folks complete our on-line Volunteer Application by visiting<http://www.DEStateParks.com/VolunteerApplication>.

State Park vehicle on patrol
State Park vehicle on patrol

On the application they check the Park Watch volunteer opportunity or indicate in any of the OTHER boxes: Surf Tag Park watch.
Once we receive the completed application, volunteers are contacted by our Volunteer Coordinator who will discuss the program and next steps.
Capt. Savidge will interview interested volunteers to answer questions and ensure the match of the volunteer to the position will be beneficial for the volunteer and the park.

A Park Watch Training will be set up by Captain Savidge and the Volunteer Coordinator for the volunteers, and they begin service.

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Interest Meeting
If interested, we can set up an meeting to go through the program with folks interested in participating.  Alternately- if we see a good number of applications, we may schedule an interest meeting as well.

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Capt. Steven C. Savidge … Regional Ranger Supervisor (right) … and Rich King (left) … and yes I was actively fishing the day I met the Captain in 2011

RECOGNITION:
Participants in the program receive a Park Watch Shirt.
We are in the process of revising the Volunteer Gear Recognition program, which will include specific recognition items for differing levels of volunteer service hours: For example:  25 hours = TShirt or hat, 50 Hours = Chair or sweatshirt; 100 Hours = Jacket.
We currently provide a free annual pass to volunteers providing 100 hours or more of service.

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I strongly suggest that individuals and organizations help with this volunteer program.  You can help make a difference in our state parks, and give back to the community.  It only takes a few hours on the weekend and the parks need the help, be part of the solution, not the problem.  People who need volunteer hours for work or schools this is a great way to fulfill that requirement.

Fish On!!

Rich King

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