A Volunteer’s Story by Kate Greer

The Adkins volunteer training often reinforced my recent Master Gardener training, was a huge plus but the Adkins sessions themselves had a particular importance to me. These past weeks have given me a relationship with the Arboretum that I could not have imagined yet so hoped for.

[The] response sheet didn’t quite give me the room to say more than the basics. But there was so much more to be said: The magic was with the place, with your direction, and with the group that was so passionately involved.

I remember after session 2 with Nick Carter, I was so impressed with his material but also with his presentation (he spoke so wisely and in paragraphs–ya gotta love that). The following session morning, I remember mentioning that how could anything top that. [I was assured] that it wasn’t a need to top it but to keep us way up there in being excited about the information coming our way. So right. Session after session, one could never even consider being absent. It was always important.

As you move forward to further training, I don’t know that you will ever have a group as passionate about the subject and as enthused about sharing questions, ideas and experiences as this one was. The group dynamic matters a lot, I suspect.

But over all, my impression was that the “training” so essentially represented the place. Maybe it was because it was on site and we had regular outings into the woods and meadows, or because the Arboretum staff and experienced volunteers were there with us, or maybe because you reinforced our concerns for the environment and taught us how we can share this with others.

I am so grateful for the information, the bonding, and the direction [the] training provided.

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