/ AmeriCorps,

Sarah Sussman and Laura Anderson, serving as Conserving Carolina’s Habitat Restoration Associates in Polk County!

Sarah Sussman and Laura Anderson, AmeriCorps Project Conserve members, are serving an 11-month term as Conserving Carolina’s Habitat Restoration Associates. Sarah and Laura will be serving throughout Conserving Carolina’s service region but focusing their attention on habitat restoration in Polk County on Mondays and Thursdays.

Sarah formed her love of the natural world through her family’s frequent travels from their home in metro Atlanta to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park near Bryson City, NC, where her family resides today. Sarah cultivated her love of the natural world during her time at Appalachian State University where she majored in Sustainable Development with a concentration in Environmental Studies. After graduation, Sarah served with AmeriCorps doing Trail Maintenance in the Catskill Mountains of New York.  Sarah is excited to be serving with AmeriCorps Project Conserve and working with the communities that helped her form an environmental ethic at a young age.

Laura grew up in Lexington, Kentucky and moved to Asheville in 2014 to pursue a Bachelor of Science degree in Environmental Studies form UNC Asheville. While in college, Laura interned with the NC Wildlife Commission Aquatics Division, focusing on propagating, surveying, and restocking WNC mussel, which is a species of concern. Laura has also spent years volunteering with the Sierra Club and the WNC Nature Center. She spent her first AmeriCorps Project Conserve term as the Asheville Green Works Water Quality Coordinator, and now she is excited to return for a second term as one of Conserving Carolina’s Habitat Restoration Associates.

Sarah and Laura will be hosting two separate workdays in Polk County.  On Mondays, join them (and the Kudzu Warriors) from 9-11 at Norman Wilder Forest to help eradicate kudzu from this beautiful nature preserve. Join them every other Thursday at the Town of Tryon lot near IGA from 9-11, starting on October 29th to eradicate kudzu and other non-native and invasive species from this special 2-acre preserve in Tryon.

If you are interested in volunteering with Conserving Carolina, please contact Meredith Wingerson, Conserving Carolina’s Community Engagement Associate, at [email protected] or call 828-697-5777, ext 211. Due to Conserving Carolina’s COVID-19 volunteer policies, RSVP’s are required to help staff adequately plan for safety precautions and to maintain group sizes 10 or less.

Sarah and Laura hope to develop relationships with many community members and partners and, through education, generate an overall greater appreciation by the public of this unique and special part of North Carolina.

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