Thanks to all who provided feedback through our 2019 member & volunteer survey. It’s valuable for our organization to hear from you about your experience with FKC, on what’s working and what isn’t, and your thoughts on how we advance towards our vision of a Kananaskis Country of exquisite natural and cultural landscapes enjoyed by present and future generations.
We had 83 respondents and overall feedback was very positive. Here are some highlights of what we heard, and we’d love to hear from you if you have any additional thoughts or missed our survey.
- 77% of respondents joined FKC as a volunteer/member in the last 5 years.
- The top 3 activities our members & volunteers participate in: 1) hiking 2) snowshoeing 3) cross country skiing
- What do people like about volunteering with FKC? The top three: 1) The sense of giving back to Kananaskis Country 2) Being outside 3) Building and maintaining trails I use
- And, the dislikes? Although 83% of respondents said “no dislikes”, we did hear from a few folks that 1) the work is too hard 2) not enough is accomplished, as well as some additional comments:
- “Too busy” and “Times/dates of volunteer opportunities don’t work for me” were by far the most common reasons for not participating in a trail care day
- Travel times to project locations are too long
- We also heard some ideas for additional trail care opportunities:
- Lighter/less physical work
- Activities appropriate for kid/youth involvement
- Trail clean-up days
- Winter work: ski/snowshoe trail grooming, snow farming
- Removal of wildlife attractants
- Invasive species management
- Trail projects in the Elbow, Sheep & Highwood areas
Carpooling: 2019 was our first trial of facilitating carpooling to trail days. Awareness and interest were both low, however 40% of you let us know it was of interest and you’d like to consider using it with better notification when a carpool was initiated by another volunteer.
Two “Trail Building 101” workshops were also on offer for the first time in 2019. Attendance was OK, but you told us that we could have communicated more about these.
- We’re pleased to see that there is interest in introductory and intermediate-level trail workshops in 2020, and we hope to expand this program to include a Calgary venue in addition to West Bragg Creek and Canmore.
- Just over a quarter of respondents haven’t participated in a volunteer activity because ‘they are uncertain if they have the necessary skills to participate’. Hopefully, continuation of these workshops, as well as developing some video resources on trail days and trail building and maintenance skills, will help address some of the uncertainty and enable more folks to participate in a trail care event.
- We had some suggestions on improving awareness of trail care and other volunteer opportunities and other FKC events via additional social media and outreach to clubs & outdoor groups.
- Improve how we communicate our organization and the outcomes of our volunteer work more; signs to have on trail during trail care days; posters in Visitor Centres.
- More focus on low impact/tread lightly/conservation/preservation messaging.
All in all, we are grateful to work with such an amazing community of members and volunteers, without whom none of this would be possible. Whether it’s through our newsletter or out on a trail care day, we look forward to connecting with everyone in 2020.