Given the nature of SER’s mission, we feel a unique responsibility to address the environmental impact of our conferences and contribute positively to the ecological health of the host destination. One day of our in-person conferences has historically been reserved for Make a Difference Day, a hands-on volunteer event at a restoration site near the venue. Not only does this give participants a first-hand look at restoration priorities in the local context, it also helps us collectively give something restorative back to the host region.
With the upcoming SER2021 World Conference going virtual due to the pandemic, Make a Difference Day has become Make a Difference Week! SER is extending the traditional day-long activities to a week to give everyone, everywhere a chance to positively impact their communities and engage in hands-on restoration projects.
The Make a Difference Week is scheduled to run from 5–13 June 2021, beginning on World Environment Day, and the official launch of the UN Decade on Ecosystem Restoration.
We are encouraging individuals, governments, clubs, schools, NGOs, and SER regional chapters and student associations to organize locally relevant, volunteer-led, and COVID-safe events as part of Make a Difference Week. In early 2021, we will launch a platform where you can share information about your event or find an event near you.
What kinds of activity could I organize?
Make a Difference Week events do not need to be any different from a typical volunteer restoration event in length or focus, and it can take place on any day during the week of 5–13 June.
Potential activities include but are not limited to: restoration plantings, seed collection and seedball making, invasive plant pulls, and garbage pick-ups, river clean-ups, or fencing removal. Overall, your event of choice must be easily accomplished consistent with any local or national COVID restrictions in your area.
Our goal is to provide locally-organized activity in every country where SER members can be found. It is ambitious, but together we can put together one of the biggest worldwide efforts for restoration ever! If there’s no event yet scheduled in your country and you want to schedule one – you can do so.
SER has created a committee to help support this effort and we will be launching an interactive online organizing platform soon. If you are interested in organizing a Make a Difference event in your area as part of SER2021, please get in touch with us at firstname.lastname@example.org. We look forward to hearing back about your ideas and paving a way for a massive community restoration volunteer event all across the world!
Remember to “tell a friend to tell a friend”, and this flyer can help with that!