Volunteer info for Gulf oil spill

by Mike Gaworecki

May 12, 2010

UPDATE: It’s extremely important at this point that we do everything we can to prevent the next oil spill from ever happening. Take action now to tell Congress: No drilling, no coal, clean energy now! And if you want to do even more, check out this post I put up over on our Grassroots Blog to find toolkits for holding rallies in your community, writing letters to the editor of your local paper, and more: Want to help prevent the next
catastrophic oil spill?

Our team on the ground in Louisiana has sent us a number of new ways you can get plugged in to the animal-rescue and clean up efforts if you’re in the Gulf region. There are 6 Ways to Help posted at that link, including how to report oiled wildlife (they recommend you don’t try to help the wildlife without a trained expert), who best to donate to, and this bit on volunteering:

Tristate Bird Rescue & Research is coordinating on-the-ground volunteer efforts. Several other groups are helping to organize volunteers to help cleanse birds and otherwise protect both wildlife and human populations along the Gulf Coast. Our favorite … is The National Audubon Society, which is helping connect volunteers with the best government or non-profit agency doing work related to the oil spill response. (But there are many many many others.) The government also has a volunteer hotline at 1-866-448-5816.

In general, organizations are urging people not to travel to volunteer.

The Louisiana Bucket Brigade and Lake Pontchartrain Basin Foundation are also great places to check out for ways you can help.

We’re all horrified and saddened beyond words by the catastrophic oil spill in the Gulf. If you find yourself actually close enough to lend a hand in mitigating the impact this disaster will have on the Gulf’s coastline and wildlife, there’s a volunteer info hotline you can call: 1-866-448-5816. That number also works if you want to report an oiled shoreline.

A website has been set up to help manage the response to the Deepwater Horizon disaster: You can also find numbers to report oiled wildlife or discuss oil spill-related damage, plus find updates on the cleanup from the Coast Guard, on that site.

The website of Mobile Baykeeper also has this:

According to consultants working for BP, the best thing we can do right now to prepare for oil making landfall is to clean up the shorelines. The less garbage and debris on shorelines the easier they are to clean up. We know the weather is not going to be friendly, but if you can get to your favorite shoreline today or tomorrow you can help speed up the clean up process.

DO NOT remove any live plants. Simply remove any garbage, large shells, drift wood, etc. Debris should be removed to the extent that wave and tides can reach.
Plans are being made to train and organize volunteers for cleanup efforts in the days and weeks to follow. We will let you know when we hear further details about this.

If you’re in or near the Mobile Bay, Alabama area, they are a good resource to get in touch with as well.

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