Volunteer ambassadors sought to enhance visitors’ experiences at trailheads across Washington 

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News release

Contact: Erin Browning 
Media contact: WDFW, Eryn Couch, 360-890-6604
WTA, Allie Tripp 

State, nonprofit partner to launch pilot Ambassador program starting in summer 2023
 
OLYMPIA – The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) and Washington Trails Association (WTA) – a trails nonprofit – are looking for volunteers for a new Ambassador program. Volunteer ambassadors will welcome visitors at boat launches and trailheads on WDFW-managed lands, provide information about the wildlife area, and raise awareness about Recreating Responsibly

The program kicks off July 1 at six locations across Washington, including Yakima River water access sites, Teanaway Junction and Thorp, in Kittitas County as well as Lewis Butte and Pipestone Canyon in the Methow Wildlife Area in Okanogan County. Ambassadors will be at trailheads every Saturday through Sept. 16, 2023. 

“We’re so proud to partner with WTA to engage Washingtonians directly in public land stewardship,” said Cynthia Wilkerson, WDFW lands division manager. “Not only will volunteers help to make WDFW trailheads more welcoming, they’ll also promote safe, meaningful recreation experiences while protecting natural, cultural, and tribal resources.” 

“We are excited to collaborate with WDFW to launch the ambassador program this summer,” said Allie Tripp, WTA strategic initiatives senior manager. “WTA has a long history of working with volunteers, so we know the power of harnessing peoples’ passion to protect the places we love. We are thrilled to engage with local outdoor enthusiasts to grow a more connected and informed recreation community.”  

The pilot program is part of WDFW’s recently published 10-Year Recreation Strategy for WDFW-managed Lands, which aims to protect natural and cultural resources, improve visitor experiences, and reduce recreation impacts. Interested volunteers should reference WTA’s website for more information and to apply. Applications are due by June 15, 2023. 

All members of the public are invited to participate in WDFW volunteer opportunities regardless of race, color, sex, age, national origin, language proficiency, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity and/or expression, status as a veteran, or basis of disability.

WDFW manages more than a million acres of land and hundreds of water access areas throughout the state. By actively managing lands, restoring habitats, and preserving wild places, the Department serves as stewards for Washington’s natural places, protecting the state’s land and water for its human and wildlife populations.

Washington Trails Association (WTA) is the largest state-based hiking and trail-maintenance nonprofit. We have a 50-year legacy of engaging the hiking community to ensure Washington's trails stand the test of time. WTA mobilizes hikers as public lands advocates, trail stewards, and on-the-ground experts sharing knowledge with fellow hikers. WTA's strength is our community and our vision depends on fostering an inclusive organization where everyone feels welcome and represented. Together we can ensure there are trails for everyone, forever. 

Individuals who need to receive this information in an alternative format, language, or who need reasonable accommodations to participate in WDFW-sponsored public meetings or other activities may contact the Civil Rights Coordinator by phone at 360-902-2349, TTY (711), or email (Title6@dfw.wa.gov). For more information, see https://wdfw.wa.gov/accessibility/requests-accommodation.