by Alivia Acosta, ATC National Service Coordinator

Tools Beyond a Pulaski

Most of the blood, sweat, and tears shed by volunteers does not happen on the Trail; but rather at a desk or behind a computer screen. Okay, that’s probably not true, but it sure can feel like that sometimes.

The majority of volunteers on the Appalachian Trail are usually members of at least one of the thirty-one affiliated A.T. maintaining clubs. These thirty-one organizations are located throughout the Trail and vary from one another in a variety of ways. The one thing that they all have in common however, is their devotion to maintaining the A.T.

As they say, it takes a village to raise a child, and the same and more is true when it comes to the maintenance of the first National Scenic Trail. Each club relies on its cohort of volunteers to produce effective means of volunteer maintenance. The following tools are examples of how a few A.T. clubs rose to the occasion and crafted a means of effective administrative organization:

Natural Bridge Appalachian Trail Club: Produced a descriptive list of their officer and committee members, along with a description of their responsibilities.

Tidewater Appalachian Trail Club: Created an Activities Leader’ Guide.

Providing explicit communication of volunteer expectations by using tools such as the ones above helps to ensure a sustainable volunteer corp because as we know: volunteer appreciation starts with clear expectations.

If your club has similar resources available please share them with us at [email protected]. If your club is ready to build or refresh these kinds of resources these tools are great templates to start that process. Please reach out to [email protected] for access to these documents or other resources.