Summer volunteer opportunities

Summer has finally arrived here in Anchorage. With extended day hours and warmer weather, many want to make the most of outdoor activities.

Monika Fleming, the president of The Outdoor Recreation Club at UAA, suggests looking at the volunteer opportunities that Challenge Alaska and Alaska Trail Stewards have to offer.

“People can volunteer and meet new friends while being outside. It’s a great way to meet new people,” Fleming said.

The Outdoor Recreation Club is currently only in operation in the fall and spring, and are always looking for new people interested in events and activities, according to Fleming. The club also posts outdoor events and activities regularly.

Another resource for outdoor activities, Challenge Alaska, offers many volunteer opportunities to work with adults and children with disabilities. Currently, they meet up weekly to bicycle.

“We are always looking for volunteers to help run and maintain the events,” Jeff Dick, the Paralympic sports coordinator of Challenge Alaska, said.

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Hope Hughes attended UAA in 2018 and was interested in events and activities outside during her time at the university.

“It would have been great to do outdoor stuff that helped people with disabilities. I would totally have signed up,” Hughs said.

Summer Splash, an upcoming event hosted by both Challenge Alaska and Summer Splash, will take place on June 29 in Palmer. The event will be a full day of adaptive watersports, such as water skiing.

“It is a great opportunity to help people with disabilities in an outdoor setting, especially for students, as some of the time they spend doing this may also count as credit hours,” Dick said.

Another resource for finding outdoor events is the Alaska Trail Stewards. The group organizes events for volunteers to get outside, get together and work on trails in both state and national parks. An upcoming opportunity to work as volunteer for trail maintenance will be on June 29. Volunteers will work on constructing a new one-mile section of the Middle Fork of Campbell Creek Trail.  

For more information about Challenge Alaska and Alaska Trail Stewards, visit their Facebook pages.