The Florida State Parks Foundation today congratulated the army of state park volunteers who last year contributed more than 1 million hours of time, talent, and effort.
“Florida State Parks are rightly recognized as the best in the nation and this would not be possible without the enormous role played by thousands of volunteers”’ said Foundation President Gil Ziffer.
Last year, volunteers, including community service and AmeriCorps members, contributed 1,161,640 hours, the equivalent of an additional 559 full time employees and with a value of more than $31.5 million, he said.
There are more than 10,400 volunteers who safely work alongside park staff enhancing visitor experiences and helping with park maintenance and resource management. Park volunteers often bring special skills and knowledge and feel rewarded by helping others.
The Foundation, founded in 1993 as Friends of Florida State Parks and renamed in 2018, is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit corporation whose mission is to support and help sustain the Florida Park Service, its 175 award-winning parks and trails, local Friends groups and more than 10,000 park volunteers.
It does this through programs that preserve and protect state parks, educate visitors about the value of state parks, encourage community engagement and active use of state parks, and advocacy.
The volunteer Board of Directors represent private and public sectors as well as local and statewide interests.