Our Story

In 1972, when awareness of threats to the San Francisco Bay ecosystem began to grow, a group of women concerned about preserving the estuary for future generations created a small, hands-on program for local children. The program included a field trip to the Bay so students could experience it, know it, enjoy it, and grow to take care of it. This was the birth of Environmental Volunteers. Since then, more than 519,000 children and adults have explored natural science learning with us!


To promote the understanding of and responsibility for the environment through hands-on science education.

Our Vision

That all people will learn about and be inspired by the natural world so that they become responsible stewards of the Earth. We achieve this by:
  • Providing hands-on science education
  • Encouraging awareness of the interrelationships between people and nature
  • Fostering an attitude of stewardship for the environment
  • Providing knowledge and skills to children so they can make informed decisions about the environment.

Our Values

We believe that everyone deserves the opportunity to learn about nature, because the more people who connect with nature the more we all benefit. When more people have more meaningful experiences with nature, their quality of life, health and social well-being improve and in turn their communities become stronger and more sustainable. We believe that nature is for everyone. In line with our vision to inspire a love for science and nature, we hold close a set of values that guide our actions:
  • Passion: we believe that nature is awesome, everywhere and for all. We develop and empower future stewards of nature
  • Learning: we believe that learning and curiosity are at the core of what we do
  • Integrity: we operate with personal integrity & honesty, ensuring fiscal responsibility & transparency
  • Diversity and Equity: we strive to have our board, staff and volunteers represent the cultural backgrounds of the populations we serve.
  • Teamwork: we work together to achieve excellence in all we do; we are caring, collaborative and respectful.
  • Embracing Change: we courageously embrace change and innovate to fulfill our vision.


Environmental Volunteers believes all children deserve to learn about the natural world through personal exploration, so they can become responsible stewards of the Earth. At the Environmental Volunteers we believe that what children appreciate and love, they will protect.


Founded in 1972

“I wanted to say thank you to you and your fellow volunteers for putting on a fabulous presentation yesterday in Room 9. The students were engaged and excited and you all made learning enjoyable! We look forward to seeing you next year!”

Teacher, Hawes Elementary School