Where in the world is RON?

By Tessa Munson
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Ever wonder what the people in those iconic green tree shirts are doing on and off campus? Those green tree shirts represent the environmental education nonprofit organization at California State University, Monterey Bay (CSUMB), Return of the Natives. You may see us from time to time working on various environmental projects; planting California native plants in the Fort Ord National Monument, teaching children in Salinas the importance of the environmental stewardship and picking up garbage on the Monterey coast.

On Saturday, Feb. 3, Return of the Natives, in collaboration with CSUMB graduate students, hosted a public planting event on the CSUMB campus. The graduate students work on various parts of campus to restore the habitats as close to their original state as possible. Much of the natural areas on campus have been degraded from assorted activities, so graduate students and Return of the Natives work independently as well as together to restore the different areas.

CSUMB grad students, Return of the Natives, and some enthusiastic volunteers worked together to restore a degraded site near the corner of Colonel Durham Rd and Malmedy Rd, adjacent from the Monterey College of Law. Together, they planted over 750 California native plants, including (but not limited to), Coyote Bush, Blue Eyed Grass, Ceanothus, Seathrift, Buckwheat, Sticky Monkey Flower, among many others!

If you’re looking to get involved, Return of the Natives hosts public service events regularly, with volunteer events planned just about every weekend during the CSUMB spring and fall semesters. Not only that, Return of the Natives also offers volunteer work every Tuesday morning from 10:30am to 12:30pm in the plant nursery, “from seed sowing to handiwork to weeding.”

Working with your hands and getting the opportunity to help your community at the same time is so rewarding! Return of the Natives is always looking for more helpers to contribute, and if you decide to join your help will be greatly appreciated for generations to come! It is so rewarding to be part of something bigger than yourself, and to serve the wonderful Monterey community. For more information about public volunteer events, please visit their calendar at https://csumb.edu/ron/event-calendar.

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