Hopkins Demonstration Forest benefited this spring from an unexpected and unique fund raiser totaling $21,000. The Hopkins Forest is a local resource for forestry and natural resource education led by OSU Extension Service faculty in Clackamas County.
The Portland staffs of two sister companies, Aveda Institute beauty schools and Dosha beauty salons, selected Hopkins for their annual Earth Month project last spring. Each April they raise and donate money to support an organization that contributes to environmental improvements.
The connection began with Kimberly Johnson, CEO of Aveda/Dosha, and her husband, Ray, buying 70 acres adjacent to the Hopkins Forest—located at the end of Brockway Road in Beavercreek. Then, in 2015, they took a Woodland Management short-course led by Glenn Ahrens, OSU Extension Forester in Clackamas County, and member of the Forests Forever, Inc. Board of Directors—the non-profit organization that owns and manages Hopkins. That led to Aveda and Dosha selecting Hopkins for their spring fund raiser, and they asked to have a field day for their students and staff to be hosted at Hopkins. Ahrens had only two weeks to plan the field day and solicit volunteers to help pull it off.
“I came up with 12 learning stations along a two-mile hike” for 12 groups,” Ahrens said. “It came out well, focusing on family forestry. Some of our board member volunteers said they learned things, too.” About 100 Aveda/Dosha employees came out to Hopkins, took the hike, and were introduced to the organization they would be raising funds for during April—Earth Month. Half of the group stayed for lunch and participated in a service project to spread wood chips to resurface a trail.
A month later, Ken Everett, Forests Forever Executive Director, attended an Aveda student assembly in the Pearl District of Portland and was given a large cardboard representation of the fund raising check for $21,000. “They certainly are awesome fund raisers,” reported Everett. “I told them how important their gift was to our educational program at Hopkins.”
And where will the money go? The FFI board plans to use the funds for construction of the small cabin atop the historic Clatskanie Mountain fire lookout tower, at Hopkins, and other work needed to open the tower for public visits. The tower was moved to Hopkins in 2010, but has been never been completed due to a lack of funds.
Aveda/Dosha have already announced they will be back in 2017 supporting the Hopkins Demonstration Forest. Plans are underway for a late February kick-off event in the forest for the employees and staff to orient them to the fundraising effort coming in April. Forests Forever, Inc. and the Hopkins Demonstration Forest will be helping this year by spreading the word about the fundraiser in local communities through Clackamas County and encouraging participation in Aveda and Dosha events and activities planned for Earth month in April.
“This is a great event and a wonderful chance to build interest and awareness about environmental stewardship and caring for the Earth,” said Extension Forester, Ahrens. “We really appreciate the interest and the leadership by our partners at Aveda and Dosha and their connection to forests and the important benefits we all enjoy that come from trees.”