Friends of South Walton Sea Turtles Announce 2019 Volunteer Beach Ambassador Training Dates
The Friends of South Walton Sea Turtles (FOSWST) have announced training dates for their Volunteer Beach Ambassador Team launched each year as part of their mission of sea turtle conservancy through awareness and education. This 501 c 3 provides educational programs in the schools and on the beaches (to both locals and tourists). It is the VBA Team that covers the beaches/bike paths and other areas in the community, educating visitors and locals on the necessity of keeping our beaches Clean, Dark and Flat! In addition to educating folks on beach codes and general beach etiquette, VBA’s help fill in holes, flatten sand art at the end of the day, and pick up trash. Volunteers are not assigned a schedule or location. Laurie Reichenbach, Chairperson of the VBA program says, “The beauty of serving the county as a VBA is that you choose where on the beach or out in the community you want to serve, you pick your own schedule, and you give the amount of time that you have. It’s very flexible for those who work or have limited availability. One of our VBA’s logged over 1,000 hours while others may average only a few minutes each week. We have no specific requirement so that all can participate.” It costs $5 to join Friends of South Walton Sea Turtles but the shirt, name tag, and training materials are free. The VBA uniform is sponsored by Visit South Walton. A VBA is required to train yearly so all stay up to date on any new beach ordinances or code changes. Last year, FOSWST enlisted 224 adults and 70 Jr. VBA’s. Our Jr. VBA student volunteers may attend the class and train with their parent. All student volunteers under age 18 must work under the supervision of their VBA parent to receive credit for volunteer hours required by their schools.
The only requirement to join the VBA program is you must be a full time Walton County Citizen or a second home owner who is in the area at least 3-months during the year. To register or to learn more, please contact Laurie Reichenbach by email:
firstname.lastname@example.org or call Laurie at 214-505-6273. Scheduled training dates are as follows: Saturday, February 23rd, 9-12 noon, Saturday, March 2nd, 9-12 noon. Both will be conducted at the Visit South Walton Tourist Development Visitor Center. The following scheduled sessions will be conducted at the Coastal Branch Library located at 437 Greenway Trails in Santa Rosa Beach; Wednesday, March 27th, 6:30-9 pm, Tuesday, April 16th, 6:30-9 pm, Wednesday, May 15th, 6:30-9 pm, Tuesday, June 18th, 6:30-9 pm, Wednesday, July 17th, 6:30-9 pm, and Wednesday, August 14th, 6:30-9 pm.
Friends of South Walton Sea Turtles invites everyone to become a part of this growing team and make a positive difference on our beaches.
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