Volunteers are a vital part of our team at 30 Mile. In addition to the four opportunities described below, we utilize volunteers for administrative support, photography, writing, carpentry and more.
Watershed surveys are one of the first steps a community can take toward protecting water quality in their lake. During a watershed survey, trained volunteers work alongside technical leaders to identify sources of erosion and polluted stormwater runoff to help the lake community work toward finding ways to address or eliminate them. Survey volunteers often become local experts by attending an in-depth training session and assisting with the survey, then continuing public education long after the survey has been completed by sharing their knowledge with friends, family, and neighbors. Watershed surveys demonstrate how the greater lake community can work together to protect their beloved lake, and it all starts with you! Find out more about Watershed Surveys.
Courtesy Boat Inspection (CBI)
CBIs are the “first line of defense” in preventing plant fragments found hitchhiking on boats and trailers from entering our lakes. Public boat launches throughout the watershed are staffed by paid and volunteer inspectors who conduct inspections of boats, trailers and gear, while educating boaters about the threats of invasives. By donating their time, volunteers allow us to have greater coverage at boat launches throughout the summer to better protect our lakes. Volunteer shifts are typically 2-3 hours, one day a week, but are flexible. Training will be provided. Find out more about our CBI Program here. Find out more about our CBI Program.
Water Quality Monitoring
Through our monitoring program, we collect extensive data to track the health of our lakes and ponds. We measure water clarity, temperature, dissolved oxygen, phosphorus and other indicators of water quality. Monitoring is conducted May-September, twice a month on each lake. Volunteers work alongside our staff, in a canoe or motor boat, assisting in data collection. Volunteers who complete training with Lake Stewards of Maine may become certified to collect data. There are roles for both trained and untrained volunteers to support our program. Find out more about our Water Quality Monitoring Program.
LakeSmart is a statewide education and reward program that helps lakefront property owners manage landscapes in ways that protect water quality. Maine Lakes oversees the program throughout the state and 30 Mile is a regional coordinator supporting individual lake teams in our watershed. Trained volunteers work as a team of 2-3 to perform property assessments for participating homeowners and offer suggestions for creating lake-friendly properties. Training is conducted by Maine Lakes and 30 Mile. There are currently three active teams in our watershed – Androscoggin, Flying, and Parker-David – but we are looking to build new teams on other lakes. Find out more about our LakeSmart Program.
Invasive Plant Patrol (IPP)
30 Mile trains and supports teams of volunteers, in partnership with Lake Stewards of Maine, to survey our lakes and ponds for invasive plants. Detecting infestations early and implementing a rapid response is critical to fighting invasive species. Volunteering as an invasive plant patroller, or “IPP”, you will spend time on your favorite body of water, on your own schedule, looking for plants that don’t belong. Volunteers survey on their own or in small groups. Most surveying is conducted from the surface, by canoe or kayak, but snorkeling is also a great option. 30 Mile holds workshops throughout the summer to provide training in survey techniques and plant identification. Online training is also available through Lake Stewards of Maine. As an IPP you will be part of a network of volunteers all across the state protecting our lakes from invasive species. Find out more about our IPP Program.