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Doing Owyhee Work

Updated: Jul 22, 2022

Hey ya'll! You might not recognize my name, and that's because I'm new around here. I started working with FOTO at the beginning of August as a social media and communications manager. This first month of work has been incredibly inspiring to me. Let me tell you why.

FOTO is an organization built on passion... and hard work. Our executive director Tim Davis and program director Sammy Castonguay have Owyhee tattooed on their minds and their hearts, and they work daily out on the landscape and back in their home offices to bring people together around this wild piece of country. (Last weekend, Tim sent me photos of himself and Sammy out documenting beaver dams as part of our citizen science initiative. They do the damn work.)

A man uses a large rod to measure a beaver dam.
Sammy takes careful measurements.

All of this work happens because of our team of volunteers and donors. The desert has a pull on people. FOTO's volunteer board of directors, volunteers like Ashley Thompson, and power donors like Larry Sullivan show us that, whatever your skill or interest, everyone has a place in Owyhee work.

Our partners have realized that, too. Bert's Growler Garage, Mother Earth Brewing Co., Balance Studio, and Owyhee Paddle Co. are just a few of the local and regional businesses that saw the work FOTO was doing and said, "Let me help you with that." Because of them, we got to experience fun nights of drinking and fundraising in the Before Times and uplifting days of yoga and paddle boarding in this strange time of social distancing. I say cheers to them.

Four people in Warrior 2 pose.
Yoga in the Wild Owyhee!

Most of all, I enjoyed hearing from you. You shared photos of your furry friends on National Dog Day and showed us how you do Owyhee. You gave us tips on our Citizen Science projects. And you always took up the challenge to be a better friend to the Owyhee. I've jokingly included the hashtag #ThankYouForBeingAFriend on several of our posts, but I couldn't mean it more sincerely. Thank you, all, for being a Friend of the Owyhee.

You can keep FOTO doing Owyhee work by donating today.

DFTBA! (Don't forget to be awesome!)


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