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By Rebecca Fending
Not only is April right in the middle of the spring season, but it also houses Earth Day on April 22 and National Volunteer Week April 19 to 25. These two nationally recognized events present the public with a call to action: get out and get to work in your community. They also facilitate a variety of Florida events, festivals, and general happenings for you to enjoy:
Wellness in Nature Gardens Earth Day Celebration
Earth Day highlights the importance of environmental awareness: how can you help support the environment and your community? WINGS has the answer: come out, enjoy yourself, and learn more about how you can impact the environment. This event is happening in Brandon, FL on April 19 from 1 to 5 pm. This family-friendly event will have health and environmental speakers, food, crafts, and various vendors.
Keep Pinellas Beautiful
Though the name may be deceiving, this organization works from Tampa Bay to the Gulf, Tarpon Springs to Fort DeSoto. Volunteering with this cause doesn’t just mean you’ll be cleaning public spaces (though that is an option), it means you’ll be working with people to better all of Pinellas County. National Volunteer Week offers the opportunity to donate your time and get involved in a local cause that means something to you. What better time to get involved than now? Visit www.kpbcares.org for more information.
TEAM Punta Gorda
Initially formed after Hurricane Charley, this volunteer-based organization focuses on strengthening the community of Punta Gorda through volunteer work and programs. From conservation efforts to sprinkling the community with colorful local art, TEAM Punta Gorda is making the area more beautiful one volunteer at a time. You can learn more about their volunteer opportunities at www.teampuntagorda.org/volunteer/.
Florida Botanical Gardens Foundation
This volunteer opportunity presents the best of both April events. Volunteering for the events hosted by the FBG Foundation is in direct support of the gardens themselves as the events work to raise money and awareness for FBG care and maintenance. Celebrating 50 years of Earth Day and 20 years of the Florida Botanical Gardens, this foundation is hosting an Earth Day event at the gardens on April 18 from 10am to 2pm. It will feature informational talks on pollination and conservation, booths from local nonprofits, and is free to attend.
If you’re looking for ways to celebrate Earth Day or ways you can become a supporting member of your local community, these events are great entry ways into a larger volunteering or environmentally conscious lifestyle. Many more events like these can be found happening in your area—even the smallest change or dedication can make a huge difference in your community. Dedicate this April to making one small environmental or volunteering change to your life.