Delving into Projects Across the Pacific West - My Delving into Projects Across the Pacific West - My
16 April 2024

Delving into Projects Across the Pacific West - My First Blog Post

Hello everyone, my name is Anna Calderón Cleland and this is my first blog post for my fellowship! I began working with the National Park Service – Rivers, Trails, and Conservation Assistance Program in January of this year in the Seattle NPS office, which provides “technical assistance” (expertise, work hours, and other non-monetary professional services and supports) to non-profit and community-led conservation and outdoor recreation-based projects throughout the country. Although I have engaged with citizen science and community-led projects in water management and pollution remediation in the past, this is the first time I’ve worked in conservation or outdoor recreation fields.

I began working with several different projects throughout the region in early February, from a hot springs management project based in California to a trail network planning project based in Washington. Working with different communities and helping them reach their outdoor recreation and conservation goals has been very rewarding and educating already, and I look forward to getting to know project teams and developing more maps, documents, and research as I go along.

The first project I am working with is the Heritage Connectivity Trails project based in Toppenish, Washington. The goal of the project for the Confederate Tribes and Bands of the Yakama Nation is to create a trail network and plan for the region, providing safe paths and transit and recreation opportunities, as well as to support health, cultural preservation, education opportunities, and economic development. In working with the project, my primary tasks are to help create a polished version of the project’s concept plan as well as to create updated GIS maps of the potential trail routes.

The second project I am working with is the East Fork Carson Hot Springs project based in California, which aims to develop a concept plan for management and access plans for the East Fork Carson River Hot Springs and their surrounding areas, as well as to identify funding strategies, while engaging the area users and project partners in a collaborative process. My involvement with the project so far has related to researching other hot springs management plans and creating an executive summary of survey responses, with my current work focusing on looking at aerial maps of the area over time to analyze use impacts in the area, researching Wild and Scenic River designations, and creating summaries of key documents for the project team.

The third project that I am working on is the Talent Urban Forest project based in Oregon, which aims to develop a strategic action plan in addition to other documents for re-foresting the urban tree canopy of the town of Talent, which was significantly damaged by a 2020 wildfire. As a part of this project, my primary tasks are to create a framework for several monitoring projects (like air and water quality) that the project team aims to undertake, in addition to creating an urban forest community education guide. The last project I am currently working with is the Makalapa Neighborhood Park project based in Hawai’i, which aims to revitalize and activate the Makalapa Neighborhood Park, in addition to providing better access and connectivity to the park with the surrounding community. As a part of this project, my primary task is to create an initial draft of a “community health profile”, which is a document that delves into the health data and health risks that a community may be facing.

In addition to these projects, I am also working on other community profiles based throughout the Pacific West region. I am excited to dive deeper into these different projects and others as the year goes on, to continue building relationships with co-workers and different project teams, and to continue developing my skills in ArcGIS, Excel, and Adobe Creative Suite throughout different project contexts.

MANO Project
is an initiative of Hispanic 
Access Foundation.

P: (202) 640-4342