One of the most unique and engaging aspects of ACE is that our American Conservation Corps members are assigned as often as possible to serve on crews alongside our international and domestic Conservation Volunteer participants. While Conservation Corps members serve a minimum of 3 months and rotate less often between projects, our Conservation Volunteer participants serve a minimum of 8 weeks and rotate at least every four weeks to new project types and locations. When ACE is able to mix our Conservation Volunteer members into Conservation Corps projects we rely heavily on corps members to provide an extra layer of guidance and technical supervision for our less experienced but equally hardworking volunteers. This added layer of mentoring responsibility helps sustain ACE crew standards while developing leadership skills among our American corps members.
ACE’s Conservation Corps and Conservation Volunteer projects represent the spectrum of practical environmental restoration work accomplished on America’s public lands. In 2012 ACE completed crew projects for 22 National Parks, 13 National Forests, 7 Wildlife Refuges, 7 Bureau of Land Management Field Offices, and in partnership with dozens of local parks, non-profits, and land trusts.
ACE staff takes pride in responding to flexible and revolving agency requests and have crews available to land managers for virtually any projects requiring energetic team labor. Our most typical crew activities include trail construction, trail maintenance, forest thinning for wildfire hazard reduction, burned area restoration, erosion control, invasive species eradication, planting, fence construction, and sensitive plant and wildlife surveys.
Projects are completed in as little as one day or can last up to a full year and sometimes engage multiple crews simultaneously. Conservation Corps members generally participate in at least several projects during their term with ACE while Conservation Volunteer participants rotate every 2 – 4 weeks to experience the maximum diversity of experience possible. In order to ensure a level of field proficiency and productivity, while also arming young adults with marketable field skills, ACE conservation corps members specialize in specific tracks such as trail construction, fuels reduction. or fencing.
Project locations vary from year to year, season to season, state to state. ACE cannot promise to assign corps members or volunteers to specific projects, or even that projects in specific parks, forests, or preserves will be available in any given year. However, reviewing ACE’s recently completed projects provides a realistic sense of the type of opportunities we offer, the skill sets that ACE members learn, and gives the best indication of the range of 2015 projects in each of our state programs. Please view a map of 2012 projects with descriptions of our work.