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Conservation Program Update

According to the Missouri Department of Conservation, bush honeysuckle shade out native wildflowers and young native trees on the forest floor, as well as compete with native plants for soil moisture and nutrients. Photo by Magali Rojas.

Heartland Conservation Alliance’s volunteer restoration workdays begin again on Saturday, September 3, 9:00 a.m. – noon at Alex George Wetland. Join our team of enthusiastic and dedicated volunteers to remove trash and invasive bush honeysuckle from our green spaces and streams. Your work will directly impact the Blue River, a vital resource in Kansas City, making it healthier and resilient for future generations. Volunteers must be at least 16, and have a guardian sign a waiver if they are under 18.

We have already removed over 18,000 square feet of invasive bush honeysuckle from our Action Areas, which directly impacts the health of the Blue River making space for native plants and wildlife, and increasing biodiversity in the area. Make a difference by signing up for the workdays on our website.

HCA is excited to welcome Queen Wilkes to HCA as the new Conservation Coordinator! Over the next year Queen will work closely with Magali Rojas, the Nature Action Crew Leader to develop, plan, implement, evaluate, and improve conservation projects. She will attend project management planning meetings, assist in managing the Nature Action Crew, and support the staff to fulfill HCA’s mission.

Queen Wilkes is a Kansas City native who graduated from the University of Denver in 2018 with a B.A in Strategic Communications and a minor in History. Queen has worked with several organizations including Generation Green, the KC STEM Alliance, the Little Blue River Watershed Coalition, Healthy Rivers Partnership and Lakeside Nature Center. Queen is an alumnus of the Green Works KC youth program where she has served as a Program Support Specialist and Outdoor Education Instructor. She currently serves on the Board as Board Secretary. She is passionate about helping marginalized youth and young adults and connecting the dots between environmental and social justice solutions. Queen hopes to continue educating young people about the importance of environmental stewardship through the lens of radical joy and personal wellness. In her spare time, Queen enjoys practicing yoga and meditation, reading fiction, pet sitting and traveling.

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