Grants Awarded 2020

Paul Wiseman Conservation Education

Not An Alternative

Not An Alternative will use their award-winning outdoor exhibition and IMAX-style film Whale People: Protectors of the Sea as part of a youth and adult environmental curriculum to inspire and catalyze community-wide action to restore and protect the Salish Sea and its ecosystems.

In partnership with Vashon Island educational, cultural, and environmental organizations, The Natural History Museum will produce school-based, online, and in-community projects and COVID-mindful events to motivate people to start and/or care for rain gardens, volunteer for citizen science projects, and contribute their time, voice, and money to decisions and projects to improve the health of the waters.

World Relief Seattle

World Relief Seattle will build a robust environmental education community program that will provide hands-on, place-based environmental education for South King County schools and community members.

This environmental education program will feature the community-led conservation work happening at Paradise Parking Plots Community Garden — a community garden designed for and by the local refugee and immigrant community. The garden is the largest green stormwater infrastructure site in South King County, and impacts the Green-Duwamish watershed by cleaning and diverting more than a million gallons of stormwater each year.

The environmental education community program will provide local school, development professionals and other community groups opportunities to engage in hands-on learning at the garden that inspires conservation, promotes ecological integrity and develops connection to the local land.

Community Conservation Education

The Foundation received 15 applications for Community Conservation Education Grants. The seven projects awarded funding are:

Friends of the Anacortes Community Forest Lands

The Friends of the Anacortes Community Forest is seeking to hire a forest educator to help the organization expand its education program to include multiple field trips for every kindergarten, 3rd and 7th-grade student in the Anacortes School District. They also plan to develop new lesson plans and activities for the programs with the Anacortes Family Center, a nonprofit that serves women, children and families in need of emergency housing.

Friends of the San Juans

The Friends of the San Juans are developing a science education program for high school students using virtual reality to connect students with the local marine food web. Students experience the virtual reality of underwater divers and field scientists to observe herring, sand lance, juvenile Chinook and more. The virtual nature of the program makes it possible to adjust the program whether students are in the classroom or learning from home.

Pacific Shellfish Institute

The Pacific Shellfish Institute is developing a program for middle school students and community members to monitor the health of the Dungeness Crab population in South Puget Sound using a light trap. The Institute will report crab counts and water quality data weekly and design a web page that allows community scientists to participate in tracking progress, reviewing notes and videos from the field, and engaging with biologists online. Each week, community scientists can collect a new “Critter Card” that provides information about one of the organisms found in the light trap.

Puget Soundkeeper Alliance

The Puget Soundkeeper Alliance is expanding its Lost Urban Creeks Project that works with youth as citizen scientists to monitor and improve water quality of urban creeks and waterways. The program has a special focus on marginalized youth and plans to develop an online story map to raise awareness about log and neglected urban waterways.

Port Gamble S’Klallam Foundation at Heronswood

Grant funds will support community classes at Heronswood that promote conservation and preservation efforts in home neighborhoods, public spaces, old growth forests, nature preserves, and other natural spaces. Community education is one of the organization’s core programs and they plan to transform their classroom into a semi-open air room that can be heated in the fall.

RE Sources for Sustainable Communities

RE Sources holds a three-day teacher training workshop in Whatcom County to promote environmental stewardship and climate science instruction. The program includes field learning and they are working with the Northwest Educational Service District to move their program to an online platform they had already piloted last year. The move to an online platform will allow RE Sources to provide their workshop to as many 200 teachers from seven school districts and the Lummi Nation School.

Washington Environmental Council

WEC organizes numerous education and outreach events every year as part of Orca Month, which is usually held in April. WEC has shifted to organizing virtual webinars and events such as Orca Story Time and is exploring how to adapt other activities to become virtual such as local cleanups.