Seattle – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Region 10, is awarding $342,000 in environmental education grant funds to the Swinomish Tribe, University of Alaska, Children’s Forest of Central Oregon, and Eastern Washington University for local projects to increase environmental awareness and stewardship.
University of Alaska, Fairbanks will receive $85,252 to help Alaska students understand where their food comes from (95 percent of their food is imported) and how growing and eating local fresh food contributes to environmental stewardship. Students will learn to conduct indoor hydroponic gardening to grow fresh fruits and vegetables. They will also perform school waste management projects in 12 classrooms, involving teachers, students and their families. The students will also adapt online 4-H curriculum to reach around 1,500 homeschoolers and independent learners. Student projects will take place Fairbanks, Anchorage, Juneau, and Kenai Peninsula communities.
Children’s Forest of Central Oregon will receive $95,760 to develop and implement a watershed education and stewardship program focusing on spotted frog conservation and river restoration in the Upper Deschutes watershed. Through after school clubs, family stewardship programs, classroom activities, communication projects, and field trips, the program will reach about 800 third- through twelfth-grade students from low-income, rural and underserved communities. The project will also include two Watershed Summits for 300 students who will present their projects to other students and community members.
The Swinomish Indian Tribal Community Environmental Protection Water Resources Program will receive $60,000 to develop and implement an environmental education program to teach the community about the environmental and cultural importance of water quality in tribal areas. The program will include a day camp focused on water conservation education, collecting water quality data using traditional canoes, and environmental stewardship projects to improve water quality. The program will reach over 900 students and community members.
Eastern Washington University will receive $100,000 to work with more than 300 community partners to restore a native ecosystem and conduct integrated vegetation management in the Palouse Prairie region. The collaborative project will help increase public involvement of all ages and backgrounds in conservation stewardship through informal education and hands-on work in prairie restoration. The restoration will include planting and cultivating 2,000 native plants. Project partners will also promote environmental literacy through a new environmental science course on restoration ecology developed for middle schools.
Learn more about EPA’s environmental education grants: http://www2.epa.gov/education/environmental-education-ee-grants.