Rocky Mountain National Park, Colorado © Chris Helzer

Real People, Real Stories

Every day across the country, courageous people are speaking out for the natural world to protect their families, their communities and their livelihoods. Read real stories about how everyday people are using their outside voices to make a difference – then join our cause.

“There can be no greater issue than that of conservation in this country.” –Theodore Roosevelt, 1912

“I use my outside voice because if we can increase the amount of green space, nature has a better chance of thriving.”
Seventh Grader - Pennsylvania
“I use my outside voice any chance to evoke action, transform attitudes, and spur real change.”
Ohio State University Graduate - Clintonville, Ohio
“I use my outside voice because living in this unique valley is totally natural and amazing with all it has to offer!”
North East, Pennsylvania
“It’s my duty to speak out and share my experiences and hopefully my story can make a difference.”
Volunteer TIS Support - TNC in Missouri
“It’s important to speak about what you believe in.”
Community-college science professor and bird-watcher - Adirondacks, New York
“People are looking for places that retain a sense of character.”
Former Mayor of Palm Desert, California - Palm Valley, California
“We are profoundly connected to nature whether we know it or not.”
Student, Rice University - Houston, Texas
“Speak up for the importance of traditional lands.”
Native Hawaiian - Kahuku Ranch, Hawaii
“Everyone should use their voices, their bodies, their minds to take action on behalf of nature.”
Member of Team Nature and new father - Long Island, NY
“Learn about issues like where your drinking water comes from.”
Environmental science teacher - Danville, Pennsylvania
“Support all types of life – not just animals, not just land, but everything in between.”
Student - East Hartford, Connecticut
“Someone has to speak for future generations.”
Water district manager, father and hunter - Cumberland Plateau, Tennessee
“If you abuse the land, it’s not going to be here for the next generation.”
Retired farmer, county judge and avid boater - Crittenden County, Kentucky
“Take a hike with your friends or family – show them what inspires you.”
Restoration enthusiast - Boyds, Maryland
“Sometimes, conservation awareness can be raised simply by speaking up.”
New York City LEAF Intern - Queens, New York
“Sometimes the things that are most important are the things we take for granted.”
New York City LEAF Alumnus - Poughkeepsie, New York

Your Stories

Everyone has a story to tell. How are changes in your local wildernesses, parks and special places affecting you and your community? What special places do you think should be saved forever? What natural treasures do you value in your own community and want to pass on to the next generation? Share your story -- speak up for nature to help save the places we love!

Carla Galloway
Springfield, Mo
DURING MY FORMATIVE YEARS VACATION TIME WAS SPENT IN MOUNTAINS HIKING, ENJOYING NATURE. EVEN THOUGH THAT IS A VERY LONG TIME AGO, I STILL ENJOY LITTLE TRIPS IN NATURE.
CobySiegenthaler Siegenthaler
Northridge
I will speak up for Nature/ Animal Rights my lifelong. Therefore we should work harder @ Plantfood-diet "VEGANISM" and stop all killing but especially "raising" animals. Nature does not do all those horrible things to animals! The human meat eaters do and only for money. Because thru the centuries Vegans won out far ahead of meat eaters in health. We would all have good healthcare for free if nobody even thought of eating cruelly treated and slaughtered animals. Never obesity, diabetes,heart disease,cancer! It takes 2500 gallons of water for 1 hamburger! We could eat endless potatoes grains dark leavy vegetables, fruits and nuts or seeds for sooo much less water! I'm a second generation Vegan 89yrs young.So do what you can for nature always eating PLANT-FOOD!
Andrew Roof
Chicago
I'm an interior designer with a passion for both the built environment and the natural world. It's exiting to me that growing numbers of architects and designers are seeking to design buildings and community environments that are not only sustainable, but also regenerative with regards to biodiversity and natural resources. I look forward every day to working towards a truer connection with the natural world and enjoying the beauty that's all around us.
Priscilla Damiani
Ewing, NJ
Please save the natural places we have left, before they are all gone from development.
Joan Walker
Bell, FL
Briefly: I grew up on the Eastern Shore of MD, the daughter of a boat designer and builder, in the 40s and 50s. My parents took us (3 children) sailing from the time I was 6 weeks old. As a teenager in MA I sailed, raced and taught both. After marriage we camped in tents with our (eventually) 4 daughters and sailed when we could on Buzzards Bay. Now married to a native Nantucketer, I am still sailing and camping. In sum: I am strongly committed, now in FL as well as in New England, to both land and water and the preservation of each.
Berry Dilley
Athens. Phio
As the population on our planet continues to grow, nature is continues to be threatened - wilderness, parks (local, state and national, open spaces) are all threatened. We want more space, we want more energy, we want, we want, we want. We want clean water, we want clean air, we want an unpolluted environment. And we can't have it both ways. If we continue to want that which makes life easier for us, and if we continue to populate the earth in larger and larger numbers, a healthy environment will no longer be possible. Without a healthy environment, life will begin to die. In fact, many species have already begun dying off as a result of our selfish attitude toward our earth. Even in my small town, our land and air are being threatened by the possibility of Fracking. And if Fracking does move in, our food, the quality of our air and water with be polluted, not to mention the noise and crowding of trucks invading the quiet peaceful community in which I live. I am frustrated that this is the trend, and feel helpless to stop the invasion of polluters who seem to care more about wealth than about quality life.
Peg Miller
Moorhead
I live in MN. I was a ND citizen. I am so sick of the fracking going on in Western ND it just a shame what they are doing to the wildlife and environment. No one knows how to get a handle on it and it just a rape of the great state of ND. I'm ashamed I was a ND resident.
Pamela Corrington
Chipley
Frank Bainbridge
Orlando
I am using my Outside Voice as a Florida Master Naturalist through a website I run: www.floridasnaturalwonders.com. The goal of the website - along with its YouTube channel, Facebook page and other social media links - is to draw people to the most amazing natural features Florida has to offer, that they may grow to love these places, because people protect what they love. We also promote nature near you; wherever you may be...experience the great outdoors.
Bonnie Hall
St. Catharines, Ontario
I am a proud garbage picker. I volunteer with the City of St. Catharines - the Clean City Initiative. I volunteer with Eco-Defenders separating recyclables from events and picnics. I volunteer with the Canaveral national seashore during winters - cleaning the beaches in Titusville, Florida. I recycle everything that I can and spread the word. I am older and want to leave the world a better place for those to come. I am proud to do my bit and help out. A senior in the Niagara Falls area of Canada.
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Sign the Pledge

I know that investing in conservation is the only way we can help keep America beautiful, strong, prosperous and healthy. I am proud to join a community of people who speak up for nature to help save the places we love.