Midpeninsula Regional Open Space District
The California Naturalist certification at Midpen serves to strengthen and deepen the level of training of its Docent Naturalists as a supplement to its longstanding foundational ecology and natural history training curriculum. Individuals interested in the Midpen Docent Naturalist volunteer service role and the combined California Naturalist course must submit an interest form to be considered for the course.
The training commitment is a 14-week (7 hours per week; a 2-hour evening session and a 5-hour Saturday session) training and orientation program. Training subjects include Midpen history, biotic communities, bird ecology and identification, interpretive techniques, geology, mammalogy, wildlife signs, trail safety, and communication skills. The training is usually offered once every two years from April through July. This training incorporates the UC California Naturalist certification. The next training course will be offered in 2024.
Contact: Ellen Tjosvold, Interpretive Specialist, firstname.lastname@example.org
Organization Description: The Midpeninsula Regional Open Space District (Midpen) is a California single-purpose district, a form of local government created by voter initiative and legislation. Midpen was established in 1972 to preserve a regional greenbelt in north-western Santa Clara County. The voters expanded Midpen in 1976 to include southern San Mateo County and again in 1992, to add a small portion of Santa Cruz County. In 2004, through the Coastside Protection Program, Midpen’s boundary was extended to the Pacific Ocean in San Mateo County. In 2014, Midpen passed its first public bond measure providing funds to improve public access and manage natural resources.
Midpen’s Docent Naturalists, along with Nature Center Docents, and Outdoor Education Docents provide interpretive enrichment and educational engagement for thousands of visitors and students. Along with other Midpen volunteers (e.g. Trail Patrol, Preserve Partners, Advance Resource Stewards, Community Outreach) over 500 volunteers contribute nearly 20,000 hours annually preserving, protecting, and connecting open space lands.