The Naturalist Club is a NGO organization which aids in nature conservation and ecological education. The club was founded in 1983 and was officially registered in 1989.
The club's main headquarters are in Świebodzin, with different branches in the western part of Poland. It has many initiatiives to take action concerning all nature problems throughout Poland. The club leads in nature protection workshops, inventoring local areas and larger territories. Research studies and projects are carried out by the club, along with the planning of reserves, landscape parks, and giving expertise consultations.
Since 1993, the main goals of the club range from nature protection, which is executed through "The Greenbelt Project-WWF. The project envelops an area of 33 communities, situated on the Polish-German border. In the frameworks of the project, it has been suggested to establish several nature reserves, landscape parks and areas of protected landscapes. Many were designed by detailed project plans. Other activities in the range of nature protection are: the production and distribution of nest boxes for birds and shelters for bats, buying land, and creating private nature reserves. The first protected area which was established in 1994 is 18 hectares, and it envelops a xerothermic grassland in the region of Owczary ( in the Gorzów voidvoidship) on the edge of the Odra valley. An important aspect of our activities is based on cooperation with the local government. Every year the club organizes workshop confereneces from the series "Nature Protection on the local level" and national science sessions concerning various aspects of nature protection.
In the area of educational activities, the club runs four permanent nature exhibitions: Insects and other non-verbrates in Świebodzin, "Nature of Drawa National Park in Bogdanka, "Nature Museum" in Kostrzyn on the river, and a "Meadow museum" in Owczary. Every year approximaately 10,000 people visit Owczary. On the border of the Drawanski National Park, there is a field station and in Owczary near Górzyca which is dedicated for protection of xerothermic grasslands.
The club also organizes various field trips, camps and contests for children and youth groups. The club also publishes many different informational materials: books, newsletters, calendar, posters and stickers. An quarterly international scientific booklet "Natural Review" is being published by the club as well as with book series on nature studies. Every three months, members of the club receive a bulletin, "The Stork". Our activities are based most importantly on the social involvement of club members and volunteers. Simultaneously in the past few years, the work goes beyond an amateur movement. Many activities are run by full- time employees and by environmental specialists employed through private contracts. The club's funds are collected through fund raisers and donations received from various organizations, private donors and agricultural activities.
In order to become a member of the club, it is necessary to fill and send an application to the club, along with a $16.00 dollar club fee (students receive a 50% discount). Come and join us!