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Boston Cares and Friends of Alewife Reservation Strike Up a Partnership
June 6, 2003

Boston Cares is a non-profit organization that organizes and leads volunteer teams to support projects in schools and community agencies throughout Greater Boston. Since 1991, over 10,000 individuals have volunteered through Boston Cares' programs at over 240 locations. Almost 1,500 of these volunteers have been from Cambridge, Arlington or Belmont; communities touched by Alewife Reservation, where Boston Cares recently began volunteering. In addition to leading over 140 volunteer teams each month for members of its Calendar program, Boston Cares organizes community service experiences for corporate partners through its Hands at Work program. According to a recent company volunteer at Alewife Reservation, "The best aspect of today was the knowledge shared by FAR members about the surrounding wilderness and its value."

Since connecting with Friends of Alewife Reservation (FAR) in March, Boston Cares has sent several volunteer teams to Alewife Reservation. In April, a Hands at Work team of 35 employees from Novartis Institutes for Biomedical Research cut and bagged invasive knotweed and bittersweet, and also helped to fortify the kingfisher bird mound, wildlife projects of FAR. Mayor Sullivan welcomed all to the company's annual Community Service Day, planned in partnership with Boston Cares and FAR. In May, FAR hosted two teams participating in Boston Cares' 7th annual Corporate Volunteer Day event. On that day, 30 employees from Mercer Management Consulting and PricewaterhouseCoopers cut back overgrown trails and removed debris. Most recently, 15 volunteers from the Cambridge-based Art Technology Group maintained paths and worked to improve the bird nesting box system in the Reservation.

According to Executive Director Patrice Keegan, "Alewife Reservation is a great site for Boston Cares projects because so many of our volunteers live or work nearby. Many of them are not aware of Alewife. Being introduced to this important community resource through volunteer service is a great way to perform outdoor environmental community service and build awareness about the Reservation. Some volunteer have expressed surprise at Alewife Reservation's existence and its diversity of ecosystems, and pride in being part of the stewarding project. As is the case with many other Boston Cares projects, this may result in some volunteers becoming more deeply involved over time and perhaps even working further with the Friends."

Thirty employees from Mercer Management Consulting and PricewaterhouseCoopers helped with trail maintenance as part of Boston Cares' 7th Annual Corporate Volunteer Day on May 17th, 2003.