The founder and director of the Black River Action Team, Kelly Stettner lives in Springfield, VT with her family. She devotes time to BRAT between her family, her full-time job, and her garden. “Be somebody” is the mission statement of the BRAT, because each of us (and all of us!) can and should step up to take an active role in taking care of our surroundings. Kelly also has the distinction of being featured in both of Kivi’s books.
Here is her typical day:
Wednesday, August 24
Before 8:00 am: Check email, gather materials for grant application, head to day job.
8:00 am – 10:00 am: Work my desk job (answering phones, sorting office supplies, processing purchase orders) whilst sketching out grant application notes. Check Facebook during morning break to confirm a volunteer’s commitment for our Visual Assessment project, make phone call to local police department to inform them of our upcoming river cleanup. Also call to thank a local supporter for donating an empty ink cartridge to our fundraising campaign.
10:00 am – 12:00 pm: Troubleshoot a printer, make coffee, and update spreadsheet for work while using email to set up an invasive plant “weed walk” to remove some Japanese barberry tonight. Lunch at desk while calling area fuel company to find out more about a suspected underground storage tank removal that may have taken place “under the radar” and without permits, thereby potentially impacting a nearby stream. Awaiting a call-back on that. Email town manager to let them know about river cleanup, check to see if we can post a notice on the police department’s big sign. Email local downtown initiative team to offer some of our rain barrels for them to use in their upcoming farmer’s market event, with our BRAT logo on the sides of the barrels for publicity. Also email local potato chip company to request donated snacks for river cleanup. Run to the credit union to pick up a money order to send to the lab to pay for water testing they did on the aforementioned stream, by the underground tank.
12:00 pm – 2:00 pm: Work on map labels, order monitors and memory cards for the office, prepare three FedEx shipments…during 15-minute break I call a pizza place to arrange donated lunch for river cleanup, email a shirt company to start requesting tee shirts for river cleanup, and post an update on the BRAT Facebook page about chips, shirts, and two donations from local businesses.
2:00 pm – 4:00 pm: Answering more phone calls, processing another shipment, working on the grant application, updating shipping log, preparing tool list for tonight’s weed walk. Researching how to remove spam comments from the BRAT website.
After 4:00 pm: Leaving at 4:30, picking up ‘thank you’ cards for donors, grabbing tools and work-clothes, going to remove barberry bushes at 5:15pm. Home in time to eat with the family, check the garden for produce, and work on the grant application from home. Probably check email and iron out details for receiving and paying for our first order of “Black River Mud” chocolate bars from a Vermont chocolate company. Might make it to bed by 11…to do it all over again tomorrow! 🙂
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