Photo by Melissa Avery

Engaging People

People are critical to the preservation of land.

Whether the land is a small urban park, a big wide open space, or working lands, we need to involve people in its preservation and stewardship. We need visitors, volunteers, donors, voters, advocates, and vocal champions.

Outdoor Voice

Outdoor Voice Collage

We are building a large and diverse constituency for land conservation. We will deepen the connection between Bay Area park users and the places they love by engaging them in ways to get involved. And we will strengthen the organizations and agencies who preserve and take care of the Bay Area’s parks, trails, working lands, and open spaces.

Outdoor Voice is unique because it is:

  • Regional. We are working across county lines to connect and engage people who can take action for the places they love, regardless of where the live or vote.
  • Focused on actions people can take to strengthen organizations and agencies. This isn’t about getting outside, it’s about getting involved and advocating for parks and open spaces.
  • Targeting Bay Area park users. We’re not trying to convince anyone to value Bay Area parks. We’re activating the people that already do.
  • Leveraging social media and meeting Bay Area park users where they are (online). Through targeted social marketing we can reach thousands of people with a few clicks.


Outdoor Voice ( was co-created by the Open Space Council community and is based on solid research including surveys, interviews and focus groups. Generous funding for the initiative has been provided by the Coastal Conservancy and Kaiser Permanente.

For Open Space Council members, supporters and partners:

  • Tell us how Outdoor Voice can support your ballot measures, campaigns, and initiatives. Contact Sarah Noel Ross at (510) 809 8009 ext 258 or by email at [email protected]
  • Use the Media Kit plus Logos & Photos (Google Drive) to incorporate Outdoor Voice into your communications program. Use Outdoor Voice to connect to the regional efforts to protect land.
  • Tag photos and videos on social media with #outdoorvoice


Questions? Ideas? Contact Sarah Noel Ross at [email protected].


Native American Partnerships

Dancing in the Balance


Because of people like you, the Kashia Band of Pomo Indians in Northern California are dancing on their land now just as their ancestors did for thousands of years.

In 2015, a group of 8 organizations worked together to return 688 acres to the Kashia Band of Pomo Indians. This film tells the story of how the Kashia Coastal Reserve came to be, and what it means for the Kashia. Weaving together conservation and culture, this story inspires us to be a part of the healing of land and people.

Click to watch:

You can make a difference. You can:


The organizations featured are Kashia Band of the Pomo Indians, The Trust for Public Land, Sonoma County Agricultural Preservation and Open Space District, and Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation. Organizations who also contributed to the Kashia Coastal Reserve include California Coastal Conservancy, California Natural Resources Agency, Lannan Foundation, and Sonoma County Regional Parks.

The film is made possible with support from The Christensen Fund. It was created by Plus M Productions and produced by the Bay Area Open Space Council.

Join the conversation online with #wearehereandnow

Questions? Ideas? Contact Sarah Noel Ross at [email protected].

Here and Now – a film and the start of a conversation

Here and Now
is a short film that tells the story of four innovative partnerships between Native Americans and land conservation organizations. This stirring film weaves together social justice, land conservation, human history, and scientific knowledge into a cohesive and moving story about what’s possible by working together.

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Upcoming Screenings & Discussions:

  • G2 Green Earth Film Festival: August 5-7, 2016 in Venice, CA. Learn more.


Past Screenings:


Through screenings and discussions, we are able to highlight partnerships and new bridges between Native Peoples and the conservation community in the Bay Area and to explore and promote collaborations that bring Native Peoples and traditional ecological knowledge back into relationship with the land. Interested in hosting a screening? Please contact Sarah Noel Ross at

Click to watch:

Every inch of what is now the Bay Area was once Native American land. For thousands of years the Native people stewarded the land such that European settlers described it as a ‘tended garden.’ Today Native Americans live in the Bay Area relearning and applying the ancestors’ knowledge about the plants, animals, and elements. In large part this is possible because of unique partnerships with land conservation organizations of various kinds.

You will travel to mountain tops, valleys, and the coast to hear from local tribes, a working farm, a local land trust, an open space district, and a national land trust. We see how access to almost 1,000 acres of land in the Bay Area changes lives today and creates a new future.

Only have a few minutes? Watch a 5 minute chapter to learn about 1 partnership:
The partnership between the Amah Mutsun Tribal Band and the Midpeninsula Regional Open Space District in restoring access and habitat at the top of Mount Umunhum which stands above San Jose, California.The partnership between the Amah Mutsun Tribal Band and Sempervirens Fund in stewarding a special valley on the San Mateo Coast of California.
The partnership between the Amah Mutsun Tribal Band and Pie Ranch in stewarding a working farm in San Mateo County, California.The partnership between the Kashia Band of the Pomo Indians and The Trust for Public Land in preserving 700 acres on the Sonoma Coast in California.


The film was produced by the Bay Area Open Space Council with support from The Christensen Fund, Midpeninsula Regional Open Space District, and The Trust for Public Land. The filmmakers are Plus M Productions.

Join the conversation online with #wearehereandnow

Questions? Ideas? Contact Sarah Noel Ross at [email protected].

From the blog