“Join a local RSPB Group, you will meet people with a common interest!” said my Father after I had moved 200 miles across the country from Devon to Surrey. He was right!

And so Mary Braddock, and her husband Dave, began their local group adventure. But, just what are local groups and how can you get involved?

Here is Mary and Dave’s local group story:

Less than a year after joining the North West Surrey Group I was on the committee managing publicity and completely amazed at the enthusiasm radiating from this group of people!

It soon became obvious we’d joined a group who enjoy birdwatching, help the RSPB fundraise and who learn more about nature from the RSPB. But they all look after their bit of the environment and get together on a monthly basis to share, laugh and learn from the array of speakers invited to Indoor meetings.

Mary and Dave Braddock

In due course, Dave became Indoor Leader, organising that all important speaker list and I became Group Leader just as my nursing career escalated.

Of course it wasn’t all indoors! There were lots of different outdoor trips to explore the local area’s wildlife – and even some trips further afield too.

Dave joined me after I had led the Group for 10 years and we continued as a duo leading the Group for another five years. We managed fundraising, gathered RSPB memberships, helped share RSPB messages, and we celebrated the Group’s 30th and 40th birthdays.

But most of all we had fun and met some lifelong friends… so you see my wise old Dad was right!

Volunteers like Mary and Dave run all RSPB local groups. Their story gives you a flavour of what our local groups involve, so why not see what your local group offers? Give it a go – Mary’s Dad would encourage it!