The Atlassian Foundation was established to help our local and global communities. One of the perks at Atlassian is being able to take 5-days per year to work at a charity of your choosing.
Yesterday, about a dozen Atlassians from the San Francisco office volunteered for the Golden Gate National Park Conservancy to help restore the native vegetation at the San Francisco Presidio, an incredible park that had once been a US Army base. The work of habitat restoration included pulling out non-native weeds like poisonous hemlock — poisonous to people only if eaten — a nemeses to indigenous plants because it competes for soil, sunlight and water.
A big, big shout out to the GGNPC volunteer coordinator, Iris Clearwater, who was assigned to us. She not only put up with our shenanigans, but she was an awesome teacher who gave us an unforgettable introduction to the history and wildlife at the Presidio. All of us San Franciscan Bay Area folks had been to the park many times, but I can say without a doubt that we all saw it entirely differently by the time we left.
It was a perfect day for volunteering. Just as we hiked into the park, the sun broke through the clouds and we had great warm weather (unusual for a San Franciscan summer). By the end of the day, we had cleared to large areas of weeds, learned a ton about our environment, and enjoyed another Atlassian Foundation day.