Meet Our Volunteer Coordinators...
I began working in Waterton in 2003 and I've been in love with the park ever since. In addition to working with stakeholders, partners and school children, I get a chance to interact with our park volunteers. Sharing my passion and knowledge of Waterton with park volunteers is one of my favourite parts of the job.
I always find volunteers are eager to learn about Waterton. To see people bring their energy and skills to a project, and to be enjoying themselves outside and connecting with nature is one of the most rewarding experiences for me. I also love learning more about our volunteers and hearing their stories.
Two of my favourite volunteer projects in the park are the Loon Survey and Wildflower Seed Collection. I enjoy the Loon Survey because I think loons are majestic birds and I love the solitude of going and observing loons in the peace and quiet of nature. I always seem to see interesting scenes or wildlife when I am out surveying. I also love our Wildflower Seed Collection because spending time in amongst our beautiful wildflowers is absolutely breath-taking. Being the "wildflower capital of Canada", viewing our wildflowers close up is one of the best way to enjoy Waterton.
One of the things I like most about being involved in volunteer projects is the opportunity to learn from the people that I meet. Before I started working for Parks Canada, I was a volunteer in Banff National Park. The staff who led projects there taught us all about the birds and amphibians we were studying. As we worked together I asked them about all kinds of other things from pine beetles to mountain lions.
Working in Waterton, I have continued to learn from the experts we have on staff as well as the knowledgeable and passionate volunteers who come out to lend a hand. It is a pleasure helping volunteers connect with new experiences that enhance their understanding of the natural history of Waterton Lakes National Park. For instance, volunteers who came out to help collect the seeds of grassland flowers were amazed by the beauty of the seeds which they had never before examined up close. In particular, the interesting chandelier-shaped seed pods of the geraniums and the pearl-like stone seeds produced by the woolly gromwell were special discoveries.
Contact our volunteer coordinators:
Justin McKeown: 403-859-5107.
David Musto: 403-859-2702.