Volunteer with Birds in my Neighborhood

Birds in my Neighborhood Volunteer Information

Birds in my Neighborhood® relies on volunteers to assist our in-school programs to thrive. You only need to be comfortable volunteering around kids, enjoy spending time outside, and be willing to help students learn. The commitment is minimal but certainly rewarding.

Birds in my Neighborhood® is a volunteer-driven program for grades 2 through 5 that helps students see nature in their community through the observation of birds. Volunteers help run the program by working with teachers to schedule two classroom visits and a field trip to a local natural area. Volunteers are not required to be experienced birders, however; passion for connecting youth to nature is a must.

To become a volunteer requires a commitment of 15-20 hours per season, along with the following responsibilities:

  • Attend required training sessions (details below)
  • Work with a teacher to set the schedule for visits and field trip
  • Lead three visits with students: in-classroom lesson, bird walk, and field trip
  • Volunteer Instructors help youth identify birds in the schoolyard, and a field trip to a local natural area, and chaperoning students
  • Attend the field trip training session and attend at least one field trip

Spring 2022 Training Schedule For Cook County:

  • Wednesday, February 23rd, 2022 from 10:00 am – 12:30 pm | Classroom + Schoolyard Birdwalk Training | Chicago Public Library (King Branch) 3436 S King Drive, Chicago IL 60616
  • Wednesday, March 2nd from 10 – 11:30 am| Virtual Q&A Session | Zoom
  • Tuesday, April 26th, 2022 from 8:30 – 11:00 am | Field Trip Training | Outside of McKinley Park’s Field House – 2210 W Pershing Rd, Chicago IL 60609

Spring 2022 Training Schedule For McHenry County:

  • Wednesday, March 9, 2022 from 9:00 am – 2:30 pm | Classroom + Schoolyard Birdwalk Training | Volo Bog State Natural Area
  • Wednesday, March 23rd, 2022 from 9:00 am – 11:30 am | Field Trip Training | Rollins Savanna

For those interested in volunteering in Cook County, or for more information about  Birds in my Neighborhood, contact Lillian Holden at Lholden@openlands.org.

For those interested in volunteering with the program in McHenry or Lake counties, please contact Stacy Iwanicki at dnr.volobog@illinois.gov or 815.344.1294.