Lower Salt River Cleanup with People's Mortgage Company

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On Monday, November 12th, we took a group of volunteers from People’s Mortgage Company in Tempe to the Lower Salt River for a cleanup at Phon D Sutton Recreation Area. Volunteers helped us remove 149 pounds of trash including a lot of micro-trash, fishing line, cigarette butts, a towel, clothing, shoes, glass & plastic bottles, aluminum cans, broken glass, red solo cups, chip bags, hair ties, pieces of plastic, Capri Sun straws and the plastic wrapper they come in, and much more. ⠀

Thank you to everyone at People’s Mortgage for your support of Natural Restorations and for spending your morning with us making an impact on the Lower Salt River!⠀

Thank You REI Goodyear Distribution Center!

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We would like to thank our friends at the REI Goodyear Distribution Center for donating $1,000 to our trash and graffiti removal program! We are grateful for their continued support and look forward to many more opportunities to work together in the future.

Check out a few pictures from past cleanup events we have worked together on and join us on Saturday, December 1st when we team up with REI and Arizona Game & Fish for the inaugural Base & Meridian Wildlife Area Cleanup along the Gila River. For additional details and to register, visit our Events Calendar.

Extreme Terrain's Clean Trail Grant Program

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Extreme Terrain’s Clean Trail Grant Program

Earlier this year, we applied for and received a $250 grant from Extreme Terrain’s Clean Trail Grant Program. We used the funds to purchase much-needed rakes for volunteers to use at our 09/01/18 Doce Pit Cleanup in Prescott, our 10/20/18 Lower Sycamore Cleanup, and all future events.

Our friends at The Home Depot in Mesa off of Crismon & the US60 helped us get the most out of our grant dollars by providing us with a discount on the rakes.

We would like to thank Extreme Terrain for launching their Clean Trail Grant Program and for their support of Natural Restorations! They respect the integrity of the landscape we live, drive, and play on, and strive to leave the trails we enjoy better than they found them.

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To learn more about this grant and see if your group or organization is eligible to apply, click the following link to visit their webpage: www.extremeterrain.com.

Volunteers Help Us Remove 7.38 Tons of Trash from Lower Sycamore

7.38 tons of trash removed! That’s 14,760 pounds of trash no longer littering Lower Sycamore on the Tonto National Forest! Thank you to all of the volunteers and organizations who helped us make this event possible, including our main Event Sponsors, Ride Now Powersports, Desert Rat Off Road Centers, Extreme Terrain, 4 Wheel Parts Phoenix, and Knuckle Busters.

Click HERE to view the entire restoration.

We've Removed Over Half a Million Pounds of Trash!

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We've removed over half a million pounds of trash from outdoor recreation & wilderness areas across Arizona!!! Between our Volunteer Cleanup Events and our Dedicated Restoration Team Projects we have removed 504,567 pounds of trash!

Thank you to every volunteer and everyone on our Dedicated Restoration Team for all of your help and hard work! Together we can keep outdoor recreation and wilderness areas clean and open for everyone to enjoy!

We'd also like to thank some of our supporters and friends who helped us get here: Arizona Trail Association, Arizona State Parks, Ascender Game Carrier, American Rivers, Arizona Outback Adventures (AOA), Arizona State Land Department, Bleeker’s Boxes, Copperpoint Insurance Companies, Desert Monsters Tours, Desert Rat Off Road, Davidson’s in Prescott, DPR Construction, Extreme Terrain, Footprints Matter to Us, Friends of the Tonto National Forest, Gallery of Guns, Icon Vehicle Dynamics, Imerys Perlite USA Inc., Insane Jeep Audio, The Home Depot, Keep Arizona Beautiful, Klymit, Knuckle Busters, LeBaron & Carroll Insurance, Mountain Chicks, Mr Target Online, Nichols Autofab, Odysea Aquarium Foundation, Pima County Regional Flood Control District, Pinal Partnership, Pinal County Sheriffs, Republic Services, Resolution Copper, REI, Ride Now Powersports, SRP, Solutions 8, Sprouts, Salt River Wild Horse Management Group, Summit Jeep Company, SVP Arizona, TerraCycle, Tonto Recreation Alliance (TRAL), World’s Best Graffiti Removers, Wrecked Gear, AZ 4x4 Club, 4 Wheel Parts, United by Blue, Visit Mesa, AZ Goat Yoga, Wildland Trekking, Vortex Optics, and the U.S. Forest Service.

International Coastal Cleanup Day with REI

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09/15/18: For our first International Coastal Cleanup we teamed up with our friends at REI for a cleanup at Bull Pen Day Use Area & Swimming Hole on the Coconino National Forest - Red Rock District. Team members from the REI Goodyear Distribution Center, REI in Flagstaff, and REI in Chandler joined us for a morning of stewardship and fun. We hiked along the creek, picking up 156.2 pounds of scattered trash found along the trails and in the water.

Click HERE to view the entire restoration project.

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We would like to thank everyone at Solutions 8 for being a Supporter of Natural Restorations and donating to our program. We are honored to have our program recognized by this Scottsdale-based business.

The team at Solutions 8 is on a mission to provide lasting and strategic digital marketing solutions that empower their clients to pursue their passionate purpose, enable their team members with opportunity to grow through meaningful contribution and build their local and global community through principle centered business practices.

Over 11 years, they have helped more than 500 organizations grow and scale using their proven digital marketing process. To learn more, visit their website at https://www.sol8.com.

Letters of Support for OHV-Fund Grant Application

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Help Us Increase Our Impact

We would like to ask for your help. We are applying for our 2nd grant from the OHV-Fund managed by the Arizona State Parks Board and we want to include as many letters of support from the community as possible.

Letters can be emailed to contact@naturalrestorations.org by Tuesday, August 28th to be included in our grant proposal. 
Thank you for your time and support! 

Your brief letter or email can help fund upcoming projects for volunteers and our Dedicated Restoration Team

Need for Our Restoration Projects
If you agree there is a need for our trash & graffiti removal projects in Off-Highway Vehicle (OHV) areas across Arizona, we would greatly appreciate it if you would write a brief letter or email of support to include in our grant application. If you cannot sign your letter/email, please include your full name and a phone number. 

Some of the areas we are targeting in our application include Butcher Jones, Mesquite Wash, Lower Sycamore, Bulldog Canyon, Sugar Loaf, Four Peaks, and the Cinder Hills in Flagstaff. 

OHV & Outdoor Recreation Groups & Clubs
If you like to ride and recreate in OHV areas and you want to see these areas free from trash and graffiti and open for everyone to enjoy, please send a letter of support. Let the grant committee know what it means to you to ride on trails free from trash and graffiti and why clean trails are important to the OHV community. If you’re a member of an OHV group or outdoor recreation group, ask your Board of Directors to submit a letter of support.  

Youth & Family Volunteer Opportunities
If you like that we provide volunteer opportunities for families and for youth to learn about lifelong stewardship and responsible outdoor recreation, please include that in your letter. If you have brought your kids out to our events or you belong to a youth group that volunteers with us, we would love to hear from you! For upcoming volunteer opportunities, click HERE

General Support
If you haven't volunteered with us yet, we still want to hear from you. You can submit a letter of support to help show the grant committee that keeping OHV areas free from trash and graffiti is an important part of keeping them open for the public and future generations to enjoy. Everyone should be able to enjoy these areas without seeing trash and graffiti.

In 2017, we received a grant from the OHV-Fund managed by the Arizona State Parks Board. We completed 11 weeks of restoration projects with our Dedicated Restoration Team and removed 69 tons of trash and 557 square feet of graffiti from OHV areas across the state, including Lower Sycamore, Mesquite Wash, Butcher Jones, and the Cinder Hills OHV area in Flagstaff. We also hosted 4 volunteer events and removed an additional 12 tons of trash from Lower Sycamore, Butcher Jones, and the Cinder Hills. Learn more HERE.  


Letters can be emailed to contact@naturalrestorations.org by Tuesday, August 28th, 2018 to be included in our grant proposal. If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to email Nicole at contact@naturalrestorations.org

Thank you so much for your time and support, we greatly appreciate all of you!


Sample Letter

Arizona State Parks OHV Grant Committee,

I am writing to express my support for Natural Restorations and their OHV Area Restoration Project grant application to remove trash and graffiti from OHV areas across the state. 

There is a need for more OHV area cleanups and Natural Restorations is dedicated to restoring outdoor recreation area across Arizona to keep them clean and open for everyone to enjoy. Their restorations enhance the quality of the experience OHV trails provide users and help show the community, including youth, what responsible recreation looks like. 

Thank you for your favorable consideration of their grant application. 

Sincerely,

Your Name
Your Phone Number

Grand Canyon Cleanup Fundraiser

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We are working in collaboration with Grand Canyon National Park to bring our Dedicated Restoration Team to the South Rim of the Grand Canyon for a trash removal project.

The South Rim is the most popular area of Grand Canyon National Park, boasting easy access to the canyon, the bulk of available amenities and services, and the panoramic vistas for which the natural wonder is famous. Sadly, the popularity of this area brings an increase in the amount of litter and micro trash left behind.   

Help us raise funds to take our Dedicated Restoration Team to the Grand Canyon for a trash removal project. 

Any and every donation helps!

If you would like to help fund the project, click the donate button below and you will be directed to PayPal. Please enter 'Grand Canyon' in the special instructions. You do not need a PayPal account to use this feature. 

If your business would like to help sponsor this project, please contact us at CONTACT@NATURALRESTORATIONS.ORG

If you work at a rental agency and can help us work out a deal on a transport van to get our team of five to and from the Grand Canyon, please contact us.

Learn more about our Dedicated Restoration Team HERE

Thank you for your support!

Reducing Single-Use Plastics in Your Everyday Life

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At the beginning of the year, we made a commitment to do more to reduce the amount of plastic we use, with a focus on single-use plastics. We started taking coolers full of water to volunteer events and asking volunteers to bring reusable water bottles and hydration backpacks to reduce the number of plastic water bottles used at our events, and we started using reusable produce bags, bamboo toothbrushes, and plastic-free razors/razor blades. This month, we would like to highlight a few more products we have been using to reduce our use of plastics. 

We were introduced to the awesome folks at Manatee Bags through our friend, Lilly, from Lilly's Plastic Pickup in the Netherlands. Manatee Bags is an Arizona-based company on a mission to reduce the amount of plastic dumped in our oceans every year. They donate 2% of their revenue to saving manatees, marine wildlife, and cleaning our oceans.

They were kind enough to send us some Manatee Bags to try out. We've been using them for more than two months and love them. They are breathable, machine washable, and 100% organic cotton. We love that they can be used for produce shopping and storage of greens, fruits, veggies, nuts, grains, and mushrooms. They are extremely durable and since they aren't made of mesh so you can use them for bulk bin items too. We even use them on road trips to keep all of our snacks in one place. 

Check them out at https://www.manateebags.com. *Use discount code LAGOON20 for 20% off your order*

Millions of plastic straws pollute our waterways and oceans and plastic straws continue to make the top ten list of most collected items worldwide. We made a pledge at the beginning of the year to 'Skip the Straw' and it has been an easy change for us to make. Anytime we go out to eat, we ask for our drinks without a straw or plastic lid.

Our friends at the Ocean Conservancy sent us a couple of stainless steel straws and some information about their 'Skip the Straw' campaign. We would like to encourage all of you to do your part and order a drink without a straw the next time you eat out. Click HERE to take the Ocean Conservancy Pledge to 'Skip the Straw'.

If you really like using straws, you can purchase a set of 4 stainless steel straws and a cleaning brush for less than $7 on Amazon and if you select Natural Restorations as your Amazon Smile Charity, they will donate a portion of your purchase to us. 

Support Natural Restorations when you shop for everyday purchases on Amazon! You can support Natural Restorations each time you make a purchase on Amazon through smile.amazon.com, and it is at no cost to you!

Click the banner above or click this link: https://smile.amazon.com/ch/81-4745055

Remember, always start at smile.amazon.com and Amazon will donate 0.5% of the price of your eligible AmazonSmile purchases to Natural Restorations. Thank you for your support!


Set of 3 Manatee Bags - Click HERE to view on their webpage.

Set of 4 Stainless Steel Straws and cleaning brush ($6.89) - Click HERE to view on Amazon.

Bamboo Tooth Brushes ($11.99) - click HERE to view on Amazon

Earthwise Reusable Mesh Produce Bags - ($11.97) - Click HERE to view on Amazon.

Saguaro Lake Trash Removal Project with OdySea Aquarium

A few weeks ago, we spent a Saturday morning at Saguaro Lake with an awesome team of divers from Odysea Aquarium led by Ron Barbieri, Dive Safety Officer for Odysea Aquarium. They did an exploratory dive on the north side of the lake by the marina and let us know what kind of trash is collecting on the bottom of the lake. 

It was pretty sad to see the amount of trash they located in a short amount of time. They found a metal sign, a large traffic cone, a shoe, a styrofoam cup, sunglasses, a dive sock, a piece of boat decking, several golf balls, glass bottles, plastic bottles, aluminum cans, a ridiculous amount of fishing line, and more. Stay tuned as we continue to work with this amazing team of divers on upcoming projects.

Click HERE to see all of the pictures and stay tuned as we continue to work with this amazing team of divers on upcoming projects!

ExtremeTerrain's Clean Trail Initiative Program

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Check out this amazing opportunity through ExtremeTerrain.com's Clean Trail Grant Program that encourages the responsible recreational use of off-road trails. Get $250 for a trail improvement project!

More information about the grant can be found here: https://www.extremeterrain.com/clean-trail-initiative-program.html. Groups of 5 or more are welcome to apply! 

We recently applied for the Clean Trail Grant to fund the purchase of rakes for volunteers to use at our 2nd Annual Lower Sycamore OHV Area Cleanup on Saturday, October 21st, 2018, and at all future cleanups. Click HERE to register for the 10/21/18 Cleanup and we will send you additional details as we get closer to October.

Don't miss out on this opportunity! More information about the grant can be found here: https://www.extremeterrain.com/clean-trail-initiative-program.html.

Earth Day 2018 - Fossil Springs Cleanup with Mountain Chicks

Check out this awesome video! We celebrated Earth Day and the 3rd Anniversary of our first Natural Restorations Cleanup by partnering with the Arizona Chapter of Mountain Chicks for a Fossil Springs Cleanup on Sunday, April 22nd, 2018. We hiked Fossil Springs Trail with an amazing group of volunteers, picking up 71.65 pounds of scattered trash found along the trail, at the Springs, and at several swimming holes. Click HERE to check out all of the pictures and learn more about this amazing adventure!

Donate Your Old Car, Truck, or RV and Help Natural Restorations at the Same Time!

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A free, convenient service for converting that extra car, truck, or RV into a tax deductible donation benefiting Natural Restorations.

You can donate online (click HERE) or call 877-999-8322 to make your donation. 

Don't donate your car or truck to some charity you have never heard of. V-Dac's trusted service makes sure your vehicle is properly handled so you get your tax deduction and Natural Restorations gets the benefit of your donation. 

Start now by clicking HERE. If you are not ready to donate, find out about donating your vehicle by browsing all the valuable information and links on V-Dac's site. 

Click HERE to learn more or call 1-877-999-8322.

Thank You SRP!

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We would like to thank everyone at Salt River Project (SRP) for awarding Natural Restorations with a corporate contribution of operating support for our programs for the second year in a row! We are extremely proud to continue our partnership with SRP! 

As a community based, nonprofit public power utility, SRP makes corporate contributions to nonprofit organizations that provide programs and services which meet the needs of their customers and enhance the quality of life we enjoy. They are steadfast in their commitment to partner with nonprofit organizations that provide meaningful and beneficial programs to their customers and community. 

Thank you, SRP, for recognizing the value of the programs we provide! We are excited to continue growing our relationship and providing volunteer opportunities for SRP employees and their families.

More than 3,168 sq ft of Graffiti Removed

Did you know we've removed more than 3,168 square feet of graffiti painted on rock faces in outdoor recreation and wilderness areas across the state?⠀

We recently updated the Graffiti Removal page on our website. Click the blue link to check out before and after pictures of projects at Oak Creek Canyon in Sedona, the Beardsley Boulder Pile in Phoenix, and Bulldog Canyon, Lower Sycamore, Mesquite Wash on the Tonto National Forest.⠀

If you come across graffiti painted on rock faces in outdoor recreation or wilderness areas, please let us know rather than attempting removal by yourself.⠀⠀

We proudly use an EcoBlaster Portable Pressure Washer and Graffiti Remover from World's Best Graffiti Removers.⠀⠀

If you would like to contribute to future graffiti removal projects, click HERE make a tax-deductible donation. ⠀

04/18/18 Lilly's Global Plastics Pickup

Happy 10th Birthday to our friend Lilly from Lilly's Plastics Pickup! In honor of Lilly's birthday on April 18th and to celebrate Lilly's Global Birthday Plastic Pickup Day we went for a walk along the canal by our house and filled a bag with 30.3 pounds of trash and plastics in 30 minutes. ⠀

It was pretty disturbing how much trash we found in such a short amount of time. We found plastic, fishing line, food wrappers and plastic food containers, fishing line, beer cans and glass bottles, a hat, a broken VHS tape, lots of plastic bags that were either in the water or half buried in the dirt and more!⠀

We would like to encourage everyone to take 30 minutes to an hour, go for a walk around your neighborhood or local park, and see the impact you can make in a short amount of time. Be sure to tag #lillysglobalcleaupdayand #naturalrestorations ⠀

Lilly is 10 years old and lives in the Netherlands. Not only does she pick up trash and plastics in her area, she also spreads global awareness of the trash and plastics problem and brings a lot of attention to the negative impacts plastics and trash have on wildlife. Lilly is a huge source of inspiration to us! Check out her Facebook and Instagram accounts and we know you'll be inspired too!⠀

Shout out to American Rivers for their support of our cleanups of waterways!

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