For Monsanto employees like Ashley Lindsay, caring for the environment is not just a passion, it's become a personal mission. So when the opportunity to assist Kealia Pond National Wildlife Refuge with its ongoing wetland restoration efforts presented itself last month, Ashley, and a group of dedicated Monsanto employees and their families jumped at the chance to help out.
The group volunteered over 40 hours helping Kealia Pond staff remove invasive plant species and restore native plants. They also helped clean interpretative signs and picked up trash.
In addition to donating manpower, Monsanto employees also secured a $500 grant that will be used to purchase a telescope to enable the public to learn more about Kealia Pond's critical habitat, which is home to the endangered Hawaiian stilt (ae'o) and Hawaiian coot ('ala eke oke'o).
Monsanto employees and their families recently volunteered to help with restoration efforts at Kealia Pond.
"Invasive plants are a real issue in this wildlife refuge," said Courtney Brown, park manager for the Kealia Pond National Wildlife Refuge. "This is a concentrated urban core area and many of the invasive plants outcompete the native plants. With a our small staff, we're very grateful for service groups like Monsanto coming out to help us maintain these wetlands."
Lindsay, who was raised on Maui and learned about native plants and restoration work while attending the University of Hawai'i Maui College studying sustainable agriculture and natural resources, is passionate about utilizing her knowledge to save Maui's threatened habitats. Today, she serves as nursery supervisor for Monsanto.
"It's important that we restore and preserve the 'aina for future generations," said Lindsay.
For more information, www.monsanto.com/Hawaii.