The California Naturalist Program, which was developed by the UC Cooperative Extension, is being offered only by the Santa Barbara Botanic Garden in our area. I am a docent there, and I graduated in the first class in 2012. We learned about being volunteer naturalists and citizen scientists taking an active role in conserving our natural resources, educating visitors, and restoring our ecosystems. The Santa Barbara Botanic Garden is a premier educational institution for training volunteers, not only for itself but also for other organizations such as Lotusland, Sedgwick Reserve and Arroyo Hondo Preserve.

If you are interested in becoming a well-trained naturalist and citizen scientist, check out the Santa Barbara Botanic Garden website ( You’ll be surprised at all the wonderful activities that go on there.


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