City of Des Moines Parks and Recreation Department

2021 Earth Month

April 1st - 30th, 2021
Various Locations throughout the Metro

Earth Month 2021, is a collaborative project between the Cities & citizens of Des Moines, West Des Moines, Clive, Norwalk, Johnston, Polk County Conservation, Polk Soil and Water Conservation District, Iowa Natural Heritage Foundation, Living History Farms, Water Works, and the Des Moines West Side Chamber of Commerce.

Unfortunately, in 2020, we canceled Earth Day Trash Bash, Iowa's largest volunteer Earth Day event, as our communities moved to slow the spread of COVID-19. In 2021, we are back but reimagined. Earth Day in the U.S. began in 1970 as 20 million Americans, from all walks of life, mobilized in an effort to change our environment. Today, Earth Day is celebrated by more than a billion people per year in 192 countries. This year, Earth Day is Every Day! Thanks to volunteer safety protocols we'll have opportunities spread out thru the Metro for small groups to volunteer while being physically-distanced over multiple dates in April-Earth Month. We will help you plan ahead, protect yourself and provide you opportunities to give back to make the Metro a great place to live, work and play again!

2020 was like no other. Many of our public lands saw park and trail usage up 200% at times. We know you want to be outdoors and so do we. This is a great way to build team culture and see each other safely outside. So, whether you are working remotely or in an office, homeschooling kiddos, or all of the above...we're here for you and are ready to do "Earth Month" pandemic-style. We know your offices are a bit different too, so we won't expect there to be Captains or team registration matching you to your normal locations. We want to make this as easy as possible for you to grab your "pod", "unit", "team" or sign-up alone. This is a first come- first served come as you are gig. And if you aren’t ready to be around others, feel free to head out into your neighborhood and pick up trash. You can still sign-up and then just share with us how much you did and where you cleaned to help our communities reach their goals.

Volunteer registration online will help us prepare and keep you safe. We ask that volunteers self-screen for symptoms before heading outdoors. Masks are required unless you are alone or can stay distanced by six feet or more at all times. Tools and supplies are disinfected after each use. If you have any questions, please reach out to your site lead where you register. They'd be more than happy to help!

Thanks to our community's commitment to a better environment and a healthier community, in 2019, we had 93 volunteer teams at 75 project locations throughout the greater Des Moines metro. Volunteers removed almost 45,000 pounds of litter, recycled more than 9,500 plastic bags, cleaned more than 10 miles of trails, cleared 7.5 acres of invasive species, and moved more than 100 cubic yards of mulch and more. While 2021 will look different we're excited to welcome you back!
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In consideration of my, or my minor child, being permitted to participate in any way in the above named Volunteer Program, I, the Undersigned, for myself and my minor child, all of my or my minor child's, personal representatives, executors, administrators, heirs, next of kin, successors and assigns, herein referred to as "Releasors", do hereby:

1. Acknowledge that this volunteer service carries with it the potential for serious injury, death, and/or property damage, and certify as to my physical fitness and that of my minor child to participate and declare that neither I nor my minor child, have been advised otherwise by a qualified medical professional.

2. Acknowledge, agree, and represent that I and my minor child will, at all times, be aware of the surroundings during the volunteer service and agree that if I or my minor child consider anything related to this Activity to be unsafe, will immediately advise the Activity officials of such, and if necessary, will leave the area or refuse to participate further in the volunteer service.

3. Waive, release and discharge, and covenant not to sue, the City of Des Moines, Iowa, its elected and appointed officials, employees, volunteers, sponsors, and agents, including others who give recommendations, directions, or instructions as part of this volunteer service, hereinafter referred to as "City", from any and all liability to Releasors, except for my minor child, for any and all loss or damage, and any claim or demands therefor, on account of injury to the person, including illness or complications associated with the COVID-19 pandemic, or property or resulting in my death or that of my minor child arising out of or related to the volunteer service, including traveling to or from the volunteer

4. Agree to Indemnify and Save and Hold Harmless the City and each of them from any loss, liability, damage, or cost that they may incur arising out of or related to my or my minor child's participation in this volunteer service.

5. Assume full responsibility for any risk of bodily injury, including illness or complications associated with the COVID-19 pandemic, death or property damage arising out of or related to the volunteer service. I agree to comply with all applicable safety rules, including wearing protective clothing, close-toed shoes/boots, safety goggles, gloves, and vest while performing my volunteer activities.

6. Agree that this Release and Waiver of Liability and Assumption of Risk Agreement and Photo Release extends to all acts of negligence by the City, not including gross negligence and willful misconduct, and is intended to be as broad and inclusive as is permitted by law including any governmental immunity afforded the City by law and that if any portion thereof is held invalid, it is agreed that the balance shall, notwithstanding, continue in full legal force and effect.

7. Authorize any medical treatment, including the administration of anesthesia, deemed advisable by any licensed physician to relieve any injuries received or illness contracted by me or my minor child as a participant in this volunteer service. I hereby agree to pay all costs of any medical treatment or emergency transportation.

8. Authorize and consent to the City, its sponsors, and any news media, and their successors and assigns and those acting under their authority, to take, publish, use in any media, and copyright photographs, videotape or other and audio or visual media, including broadcast in any media, of me or my minor child and agree that such may be used for any lawful purpose without further compensation or approval.

I have read this Release and Waiver and Assumption of Risk Agreement and Photo Release, fully understand its terms, understand that I have given up substantial rights by signing it, and sign it voluntarily without assurance or guarantee being made to me and intend my signature to be a complete and unconditional release of all liability to the fullest extent permitted by law, including all acts of negligence by the City as stated above. I agree that this Agreement and Photo Release will be IN EFFECT for 5 YEARS from the date of
my signature, unless otherwise terminated by me in writing delivered to the City.