Although our last blog featured “Friends of Lafferty Park,” as a volunteer group that has made a difference, we failed to identify a few of the volunteers who helped their cause: Bill Kortum, Larry Modell, and Matt Maguire. There are many additional non-profit organizations and individuals that have initiated projects that have also made headlines. For example:

* On January 31st, the Argus-Courier headline – Honoring mentors – reported that “A crowd of about 100 turned out to celebrate Mentor Me Petaluma’s new location and honor the program’s founder and former executive director, Val Richman.” The month of January was National Mentoring Month and the organization used the occasion to recruit additional volunteer mentors.

Mentor Me Petaluma is a school-based, youth mentoring program that matches adult volunteers from the community inb one-on-one mentorships with children and youth in Petaluma.

* “Friends of the River” is another non-profit organization that is dedicated to celebrating and conserving the Petaluma River, its wetlands, and wildlife. The Petaluma River Heritage Center volunteers, lead by David Yearsley, worked to restore a historic livery stable on the McNear Peninsular and convert it into a River Heritage Center and museum. The city owns the building, and the non-profit group raises funds and manages the center.

* Just last week (2-10-2013), the Press Democrat published the story behind “One-man crusade to cure river.” Over the past year, citizen volunteer, Steve Jette, a member of the Petaluma Wetlands Alliance, has been removing trash and cleaning out the upper Petaluma River so that kayakers can paddle all the way to the Corona Road bridge. Jette wants to rally residents to walk the local streams and banks of the Petaluma River, and look for waste sites, and report them to: the San Francisco Bay Area Regional Water Quality at (510) 622-2300. To reach Steve Jette, call (707) 765-1928.

This list could go on and on; there are many other local community groups that depend upon volunteers to achieve their missions. Please feel free to identify these other Petaluma groups, and add their names in the comment section, below.