research has focused on live plants or window views in the workplace, few studies look at the impact of walking through natural areas outdoors during the workday. It is also important to consider volunteers in nonprofit organizations, as both types of
Ellen M. Bauske, Lelia Kelly, Kerry Smith, Lucy Bradley, Timothy Davis and Pam Bennett
The EMG program began in 1972 in Washington ( Grieshop and Rupley, 1984 ). Horticulture extension agent D. Gibby, overwhelmed by the volume of requests for gardening information, devised a plan to train volunteers in exchange for assistance in
Larry Stouse and Charles Marr
Master Gardeners are volunteers who assist local cooperative extension horticulture and related program efforts by receiving training and conducting educational activities and projects. Participants generally receive training and volunteer within a 1-year period. The emphasis has shifted to longer retention of trained, experienced Master Gardeners. There are several advantages in retaining volunteers. Volunteers with established knowledge who “know the ropes” serve as spokespersons for the program to recruit additional volunteers and as mentors for new class members. Since 1980, Master Gardeners in Johnson County, Ran., have served the 300,000 population base of the southwestern Kansas City suburban area through the county extension horticulture program. About 35% of the members of the first classes are still active volunteer participants after 10 years. Retention is encouraged by emphasizing that volunteer time is an opportunity for continued learning, rather than a “payback” for training received. An advisory board and committee structure encourages “ownership” of the program, and an advanced training program is offered to retained volunteers. Developing ideas for quality volunteer activities is continuously stressed. As new volunteers start the program, their abilities and skills in nonhorticultural areas that may be useful are assessed, such as woodworking, photography, speaking, leadership, and art. Applicants are screened to limit class size to 20 to 25 participants.
Sheri T. Dorn, Milton G. Newberry III, Ellen M. Bauske and Svoboda V. Pennisi
Extension Master Gardener volunteer programs have been in existence in the United States since 1972, in Canada since 1985, and in South Korea since 2011 ( Wonsuk and Durham, 2015 ). There are active programs in 49 states (Massachusetts does not have
Kevin Ong, Madalyn Shires, Holly Jarvis Whitaker, Jennifer Olson, Joseph LaForest and David H. Byrne
. The use of volunteers in scientific efforts, known as citizen science, has benefitted and advanced science in areas of conservation science, natural resource management, ecological research, biodiversity research, and others ( Flannery, 2016
Kristen Harper, Curt R. Rom and Jason McAfee
As funding directed toward research has diminished, it has become vital seek other avenues of support to maintain long term field projects. To meet this need, the University of Arkansas Horticulture Department began the Friends of Fruit (FOF) program during 2004 engaging volunteers in conducting tree fruit field research. Volunteers were graduates of the Master Gardener program and executed tasks including data collection and plot maintenance. Objectives of this study were to evaluate the experiences and benefits to the volunteers and horticulture department, and to assess the success of the FOF program in providing assistance and support to research. All volunteers and facilitators were interviewed. Interview questions were designed to understand the motivation and level of volunteer activity, determine if training and supervision was adequate, and determine if ample recognition occurred. Volunteers sought experience and knowledge with fruit crops. Costs to volunteers included time and travel, conversely benefits included knowledge, experience and fellowship. Volunteers planned to repeat the program and were pleased with the recognition they received. Facilitators noted that volunteers had basic horticultural knowledge and the desire to learn. The program did call for improved task management and increased planning time by facilitators. The program succeeded in benefiting volunteers and horticultural research. The FOF volunteers contributed to fruit research by harvesting ≈4,000 kg of fruit samples and providing >200 hours of time.
Sheri Dorn, Milton G. Newberry III, Ellen M. Bauske and Svoboda V. Pennisi
The EMG volunteer program is one of the most widely recognized programs of extension ( Meyer, 2007 ). It was designed specifically to address the demands of CH, defined as the cultivation, use, and enjoyment of plants, gardens, landscapes, and
Stephanie Gale Jutila and Mary Hockenberry Meyer
A decision case was developed and used to train volunteers at the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum. The case presents a real life dilemma for volunteers at public horticultural institutions, allowing volunteers to experience a realistic decision making process, applicable to their volunteer jobs. Volunteers are able to identify that the decisions they make in their volunteer position ultimately affect the institution as a whole including visitors and volunteers. The case is written as an active learning tool for use in a volunteer orientation or continuing education workshop. Volunteers benefit from an enhanced understanding of the importance of communication of changes in life commitment, including how these changes relate to their particular volunteer interests.
Erika Kirsch and Ann Marie VanDerZanden
The last statewide survey of the Oregon Master Gardener (MG) Program was completed in 1992. Since that time, the program has expanded from 20 to 27 counties and increased by over 600 new volunteers. Compared to other MG programs around the United States, Oregon is the tenth largest in number of volunteers and seventh in hours volunteered. Considering the size of the Oregon MG program and changes seen in annually compiled statistics, a better understanding of who the Oregon MGs are and what they think about their personal volunteer experience became critical. We developed a survey tool to understand the Oregon MG demographic composition and personal volunteer experience. Compared to the 1992 baseline survey, the general trends found in the 2001 survey suggest that Oregon MGs are younger, joining the program with more college education, live further from cities and towns, and are more often employed. Still, the commitment level to volunteering is similar to, or has exceeded 1992 levels.
Mary Hockenberry Meyer and Anne M. Hanchek
The Master Gardener (MG) program operates in conjunction with the cooperative extension service in most states. The training, management, and administration of these volunteers vary widely from state to state. This paper presents a 4-year analysis of the initial cost of training Minnesota MGs and their volunteer hours contributed to the Minnesota Extension Service. The average training cost was $89/person (based on the total number of volunteers certified 2 years after the training) with an average of 59 ($711 at $12/h) and 40 ($474) hours volunteered or paid back over the first and following years, respectively. In all years, hours volunteered exceeded program expectations of 50 hours the first year and 25 hours thereafter.