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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Environment, Environmental Education, Natural Resources Conservation & Protection

Mission: BEAT’s mission is to protect the environment for wildlife in support of the natural world that sustains us all. BEAT involves volunteers in citizen-science wildlife monitoring programs, Stream Continuity Surveying, Turtle Watch, Salamander Watch, and Vernal Pool Certifying. BEAT maintains an educational website - http://www.thebeatnews.org - where people can learn more about the environmental laws, BEAT activities, issues, and events, and how they can participate in protecting the environment.

Results: BEAT publishes a free, weekly e-newsletter with environmental news, calendar, and public notices. Hundreds of volunteers actively working to protect the environment! Miles of river cleaned. Riverside conservation land protected from being turned into a parking lot. Riverside waste transfer station stopped. Stream crossings surveyed and evaluated to prioritize for replacement to help fish move upstream under roads.

Target demographics: the environment & wildlife

Geographic areas served: the Berkshires

Programs: Being an environmental watchdog - keeping the environmental community connected and informed - promoting environmental stewardship with river cleanups, monitoring wildlife habitat, and working to help wildlife cross roads where it is most critical.

Community Stories

28 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I am a grad student that partnered with BEAT and another student to fulfill a requirement for my program -- The experience was so much more than just a requisite! My background is certainly not based in invasive plants, so working on the development of a text guide and outreach presentation for Hardy Kiwi made me a little nervous and hesitant at first. That quickly faded after meeting with Jane and Elia. Both were very responsive to any concerns we had going into and throughout the project and were flexible with meeting our needs since neither of us live in Pittsfield. Jane knew exactly what she wanted for her end product, but she also allowed for us to take creative freedom. I found the responsiveness and clear vision to be extremely helpful during our project because it left out any guess work about the final outcome. We knew exactly what direction we needed to be headed in every step of the way. Their concise, open communication and enthusiasm allowed us to achieve a great outcome easily and effectively. I learned a great wealth of knowledge about an area of conservation biology that I was not familiar with. I am excited to see where this project goes in the future and can’t wait to hear more from the next group that continues to work on this project with this wonderful organization!

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I first learned about BEAT while exploring options for my graduate school capstone project. Their proposal, the development of a text guide and outreach presentation for the removal of the invasive plant, Hardy Kiwi, suited my interests perfectly. Despite hesitations about the challenges of working cooperatively on a project mostly remotely, as I live nearly two hours from their main office, I was grateful when we all agreed to collaborate. In retrospect, I needn't have worried at all! My interactions with BEAT exceed my expectations in every way. As I'm now reaching the completion of a graduate program that required numerous internships and community collaborations, I'm confident in saying my experience with BEAT was the best of those. It was everything an internship should be. They were flexible with our dynamic schedule. They respected our strengths, but gave meaningful feedback and support. They gave us time to work independently, but maintained regular communication. What BEAT has accomplished and continues to strive to achieve with such a small staff, is inspiring. It's been a pleasure to have worked with them.

Irmgard S.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Over many years now BEAT has been a tremendous advocate for our Berkshire communities. With amazing energy and accurate and timely information, BEAT has been educating the public on environmental issues and has been instrumental in changing public opinion.
BEAT has been a fighter for many environmental causes, such as clean water, protection of wildlife and public health. With her small but competent and dedicated staff, Jane Winn, BEAT’s Director has been tireless in pushing for environmentally sound solutions. Her efforts have greatly contributed to stop the construction of the NED pipeline system. I hope that this organization will be around to support us for a long time.

Susan508

Volunteer

Rating: 5

BEAT is an amazing organization. With a very small staff they have accomplished very large tasks. An example of this was being instrumental in building state wide coalitions and grass route networks of citizens that have so far successfully fought off the NE Direct gas pipeline that was slated to cross MA.
Within Berkshire County they have educated and inspired thousands to get involved in being stewards of our cherished Berkshire Environment. I have had experience with many different non-profits and know of none that have been so good at getting people involved and excited about environmental direct action stewardship. Their enthusiasm is infectious, their knowledge is priceless.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

BEAT is a wonderful organization and Jane Winn herself is truly a wonder. She is extraordinarily well informed, indefatigable and passionate about the environment and all living things that live in it. She has proven herself to be an exceptional teacher, listener, organizer and leader in all that she does. I feel fortunate that Jane and the talented BEAT team exists in my community and is actively and effectively committed to the stewardship of our beautiful Berkshires. A big thankyouthankyouthankyou back at you.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

The Berkshire Environmental Action Team (BEAT) has been a force dedicated to the advocacy and well-being of the ecological systems of Berkshire county and, arguably more importantly, how the general public regards and participates in these actions. Whether it be a relatively small-scale urban tree watering schedule or a much more involved rive clean-up project, BEAT has directed the helm to inform the public about ecological issues within their community and engaged the larger audience into action towards lasting sustainable goals. Their accessibility to the general public has been a cornerstone to their overall mission: community-based sustainability.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

B.E.A.T. is an amazing organization! It was one of the first organizations to catch my eye when we moved here 2 1/2 years ago. We joined in to work on a roadside plastics cleanup in Pittsfield. It was a joint effort involving community volunteers and area businesses. Shortly after that there was a river cleanup--also in Pittsfield. Volunteers hoisted and hauled marine debris from the river, the riverbanks and the surrounding wooded areas. But that's not all that B.E.A.T. does--it's much, much more. If you're interested in helping or have a particular environmental passion I recommend going to www.thebeatnews.org. There's lots to learn and there are lots of ways to get involved! It's also really nice to be a part of the solution!

Volunteer

Rating: 5

B.E.A.T. is just an amazing organization!!! From teaching small children about trees in Pittsfield's Public Housing, to bringing great speakers to Green Drinks, to informing us about what happening both locally and beyond, to being there tirelessly with answers to environmental questions, THEY DO SO MUCH! (And when Jane Winn has a spare second, she's picking up trash.)
THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU!!!

Volunteer

Rating: 1

BEAT in a word, can't be beat for its tireless effort in maintaining the health and well being of the environment that sustains us all. They have provided our small organization STOP with not only support I.e. being at endless meetings, but in sharing their knowledge and resources, their time, their personnel in helping us fight the Kinder Morgan, proposed, CT. Expannsion pipeline, that will destroy our land and lives not only now, but for generations. Without BEAT we would have been isolated, lost. This is an organization that truly deserves the highest recognition possible as a foremost leader and standard water in environmental action at its best.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

BEAT works tirelessly to protect the environment in Berkshire County. They attend dozens of town meetings all year long (select board, conservation commission, zoning, and other meetings) to provide technical assistance on issues related to environmental regulations, wetlands regulations, and so forth. Often, BEAT staff are the only people in the room who fully understand the local, state, and federal regulations that apply to a certain piece of land, stream, or wetlands area. Thank goodness they are there to protect the environment for the creatures that depend on it, and for people who love Berkshire County. BEAT also creates and distributes a consistently professional, thorough, and detailed weekly newsletter providing a great deal of information, including articles, a calendar of upcoming events, public notices, and an environmental index. These newsletters enable people who work in the field and the general interested public to know what is going on in the county. It is the ONLY place this information is compiled in one place and distributed weekly. BEAT works on a shoestring to achieve all this and much more. They have been OUT FRONT in the fight against the fracked gas pipelines proposed to cross our county, including many natural and protected areas. They have worked hard to educate concerned citizens and to act as a resource for timely and accurate information on these major proposed projects. I can't imagine Berkshire County without BEAT!