Why Should I Become a Utah Cultural Site Steward?

There are lots of reasons why you should become a Site Steward with the Utah Cultural Site Stewardship Program(UCSS)! Each stewards’ reasons are different. Perhaps one steward has a cultural connection with a place and its history. Maybe another is looking for ways to get outside and volunteer their time helping safeguard cultural resources. Some stewards are looking for educational experiences or for a community of people who are passionate about the outdoors, recreation and history. Others are simply looking for a fun opportunity that allows them to also give back in some way.

Site Stewards work directly with archaeologists and land managers to keep an eye on sensitive archaeological sites for new damage. Here in Utah we have seen an increase in damage to archaeological sites ranging from intentional vandalism to subtle destruction from changing climate forces. Traces of the past that have existed for thousands of years are in danger of going away forever, but Site Stewards help to identify issues before they become big problems. Site Stewards visit the same site several times a year to look for changes, which makes many Stewards the uncontested experts in their sites after all those visits!

Whatever your reasons, the UCSS Program could use your help. We are looking for good folks who are willing to pitch in and assist land managers by monitoring archaeological and cultural sites, reporting on any damages or changes that they may encounter. We know everyone has different areas of interest or parts of the state that they enjoy visiting. We will work with you to determine your comfort level when it comes to identifying a site that is right for you. We want to make sure that the site you monitor is in a part of the state that is accessible for you. We also understand that everyone has different capabilities and we will work with you as we find a site that is within your abilities to monitor and is connected to an aspect of history that you find interesting. Utah is home to incredible history and stewards play an integral part in safeguarding the stories of those who were here before, helping to ensure that they are not lost to future generations.

The strength of this program is in the diversity and breadth of the people who make it possible, the site stewards! For more information on becoming a Utah Cultural Site Steward, please visit our website or chat with Ian Wright , the Utah Cultural Site Stewardship Coordinator.

What are your reasons for being a steward? We love to hear from folks, so why don’t you pop over to your favorite social media platform and let us know what motivates you!