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Become a Valued Volunteer


Volunteering Opportunities

The Sarasota Succulent Society has no paid staff.  All aspects of the Society's day-to-day operations are performed 100% by volunteers.  We would welcome your participation.

Most of our volunteers choose to become one of our highly valued "Gardens Guardians".  In that role a volunteer is engaged in the care and curation of our succulent plant collections and/or the overall maintenance of the Gardens.  All volunteers are also eligible to become a member of the Society's administative team — and we invite you to please inquire about current administrative openings.

How to Volunteer

The volunteering process easy and simple — there are no formal procedures and no special requirements, other than an interest in succulent plants.  All you need to do is come to the Gardens on one of our scheduled workdays (see the next section about workdays) and introduce yourself to any of our other volunteers.  You will find they are friendly and welcoming.

Gardening Workdays

We have hands-on gardening workdays in our Gardens every Monday from 9 am to noon and on the third Saturdays of every month, also from 9 am to noon.  These sessions are subject to the weather and to the availability of our regular volunteer workers. Cancellations are extremely rare, but can happen, so if the gardens are closed on the day you visit, please follow up with another visit on another work day.

What to Expect

As a Gardens Guardian, you will want to wear comfortable gardening clothes and, if desired, a hat and gardening gloves.  You may want to wear sun screen and/or bug spray too, although those protections are generally not required by most volunteers.  You should also consider bringing a container of your favorite soft drink or water.  The Society maintains a collection of gardening tools so you are not obligated to bring your own.

New volunteers can expect to be introduced to the other volunteers and to receive a general description of our various gardening activities.  After your orientation, you can be paired with a gardening task that matches your interests and abilities.  No volunteer is ever asked to perform any task for which they are not suited or for which they are not inclined to perform.

In the beginning, you may not feel comfortable answering questions from the public.  Don’t worry, you won't be expected to engage with visitors until you feel up to it, and even then, it is always okay for any volunteer to refer a visitor’s questions to some other more experienced volunteer.  None of our volunteers are experts — even the most experienced -- so no one is ever expected to be able to answer each and every question from visitors.

Our historic clubhouse will be open during our official workday sessions.  It offers a small kitchen with a refrigerator and it has a single bathroom for limited public use.  Sadly, the clubhouse, built in the 1930's, is not user-friendly for the handicapped — there are entrance steps to be negotiated and there is no ramp (yet) to supplement the steps.  We do not have lockers for your personal property and there are no showering facilities.

We Are Flexible

We understand that all of our volunteers have other obligations in their lives.  For that reason we are tolerant of intermittent participation.  Our more experienced volunteers are permitted to independently enter and work in the Gardens on a flexible personal schedule of their own design.

Nearly all of our volunteers have chosen to become members of the Society, although that is not a strictly enforced requirement.  Joining is very simple and inexpensive.  We have $10, $15, and $100 plans.  To learn more about becoming a member of the Society, please visit our Membership Information Page

You Are Invited

We are glad you are thinking about becoming a Succulent Society Volunteer!  Please decide to give it a try.  We think you will find your time in the Gardens to be fun, refreshing, and educational.  We are eager to meet you and to have you join our team.

Questions?

For additional information about becoming a Society Volunteer, we invite you to send us your questions by way of our "Contact Us" page.