Volunteering on the Camel Trail
13th August 2009
Members of a Cornish company which works with pharmaceutical manufacturers from around the world have swapped the comfort of their offices for the banks of the River Camel to help rid the popular Camel Trail of invasive Himalayan Balsam Weed.
As part of its Social Contribution Programme in which the company enables staff to support good causes and give time to help community projects in Cornwall, eight members of the TRAC team, donned overalls and gloves to clear a large section of the Camel Trail from the weed, which grows aggressively and shades out other vegetation.
According to TRAC Director Sarah Trethowan, despite being physically demanding, working with the BCTV (British Trust for Conservation Volunteers) on the Camel Trail project was a rewarding one for the TRAC team.
“This was the latest and certainly the most physically demanding of the projects we have undertaken as part of our Social Contribution Programme, but also really rewarding and good fun. Not only did we manage to clear a lot of the Himalayan Balsam from the section of the Trail we were assigned to, but it was a great team bonding exercise as well.
“We also hadn’t appreciated just how busy the Camel Trail is, so to play a role in helping to maintain such a popular tourist attraction was an added benefit,” said Sarah.
“Although we work with organisations that are based nationally and internationally, our Social Contribution Programme enables us as a company to give something back to the County in which we all live and base the business from. It is not compulsory, but everyone has strongly supported it, which is great.
“It has also helped create a stronger team bond as well, which has obvious benefits from a company performance perspective and we would strongly recommend other businesses to develop their own Social Contribution Programme,” added Sarah.
Betty Levene of the Cornwall Branch of BTCV welcomed the support of TRAC on the Camel Trail Project.
“We have a number of initiatives running at any one time and the work that the volunteers do, makes a big difference to the landscape and wildlife not just in Cornwall but across the UK.
“In the case of the Camel Trail project, the Himalayan Balsam is a real challenge for us, so to have eight pairs of hands from TRAC to help with the clearing programme was fantastic and their hard work made a big difference,” said Betty.
For more information on BCTV and the projects they are running in Cornwall call 01209 610 610.
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