Jackson Bottom Wetlands Preserve

Providing interpretive education on wetlands and wildlife, panoramic views, water quality, weather, natural resource management, trails, bird watching, recreation, exhibits, displays and an eagles nest, Jackson Bottom Wetlands Preserve is a treasure of the Hillsboro community.




Beaver Fences
The Preserve invites YOU to support its mission of “Connecting Water, Wildlife and People” through volunteering.
WHY is there a Volunteer Program?

  • Goal #1 is to enjoy a mutually beneficial experience between the volunteer and the Preserve. 
  • Goal #2 is to accomplish tasks within the mission of Jackson Bottom Wetlands Preserve.

WHAT do volunteers do at the Preserve?

  • Outdoor Crew Member (Helps restore habitat and beautify native plant gardens)
  • Education and Outreach Assistant (Educates people at programs and events)
  • Wetlands Education Center Guide (Provides hospitality at the Education Center)
  • Water Quality Monitor (Cleans and calibrates water quality equipment)
  • Fundraising Committee Member (Assists with events)

Building Bird Boxes
WHY volunteer?

  • Meet people who like nature
  • Feel good about serving
  • Listen to kids’ questions and laughter
  • Discover new things about wildlife
  • Smell the roses and sit under a tree
  • Explore the exhibit hall
  • Walk on trails and watch birds
  • Learn to identify native plants
  • Get your boots wet and muddy
  • Relieve stress by whacking weeds
  • Get away from the computer
  • Exercise your mind and your legs
  • Feed your soul and restore your balance
  • Make a difference in your community
  • Obtain experience to boost your career
  • Take care of school or job service requirements

WHEN and WHERE do the volunteers meet?

Most activities are held at the Wetlands Education Center (2600 SW Hillsboro Hwy).

  • Monthly volunteer meetings.  Dates and time to be determined.
  • Regular shifts as assigned due to volunteer position

HOW are volunteers thanked for their work?

  • Staff members highly value volunteers and show this on an ongoing personal basis.
  • An annual volunteer recognition event is held in the spring.
  • Accomplishments are shared through the website and newsletters. 

Rita at Front Desk
WHO can be involved as a volunteer?

  • Positive people
  • People who like other people, plants, and animals
  • People who really want to help at the Preserve
  • People whose needs and skills match Preserve tasks available
  • People ages 13 and up, with youth being accompanied by an adult
  • Teens ages 13-19 in the Summer Teen Program
  • Volunteers do not have to be members, but membership is available.

HOW does it work?

Intake Process:  Contact Kristi Wilson at Hillsboro Parks & Rec., .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address), 503-615-3479, for an application and to set up an interview.  The interview will include a review of the application and and the completion of a background check form.  A match with an appropriate and currently needed volunteer position must be made.

Trainings: large group trainings are held; others are individual as needed.
Staff provides: Training, Management, Communication and Scheduling for tasks, Problem Solving, Tracking, and Recognition
Communication: Information is done face to face, by e-mail, phone, and via a hard copy volunteer manual that provides history, policies, and safety information.  Job descriptions are available.

WHAT makes the volunteer program work well?

  • Volunteer interview finds a good match.
  • Variety of work options are presented.
  • Expectations are discussed upfront.
  • Volunteer manual states guidelines.
  • Focus is on quality programs and relationships.
  • Respect and teamwork are vital.
  • Honesty, transparency, and feedback are encouraged.
  • Mutual reliability and accountability are stressed.
  • Communication is ongoing.

WHAT are Jackson Bottom volunteers saying about their experience?

I wanted a place where I could volunteer with my kids.  At Jackson Bottom we get to feel that we are a small part of a team that is working towards an important goal – the education of the public about the importance of a fragile ecosystem.  We know that Jackson Bottom has limited financial resources, and if they are going to get their work done, they need the help of volunteers.  And we need to feel that we are making a difference in helping the natural world around us.”

“Kids are bombarded with bad news and if they don’t feel that they can help, then they feel helpless and hopeless.  Volunteering is the number one way to help kids and adults feel like there is a reason to hope.  Watering trees, pulling weeds, providing artwork or guiding the Lunch with Birds program are all equally important in the grand scheme of saving just a bit of wetlands, so that there is a place of wildness. And the people at Jackson Bottom always make us feel that we are important.”

HOW can I become a volunteer at Jackson Bottom Wetlands Preserve?

Contact Kristi Wilson, Parks &Rec. Volunteer Coordinator, 503-615-3479 .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

HOW can I learn more about what is happening at the Preserve?

Check our Events Calendar.