“This Land is Your Land” – Project Funded by Alcoa Foundation

December 3, 2009

By catching insects, students get to learn about camoflauge and food chains. They also use magnifying glasses to see the insects’ tiny body parts and learn biology.

Sequoia Riverlands Trust (SRT) is pleased to recognize the Alcoa Foundation for generously providing us with a $30,000 grant in October 2008 to support SRT’s education program. The “This Land is Your Land” project for 2009 focused on providing nature experiences to underserved families and youth in Tulare County.

Thanks to Alcoa’s generous support, SRT was able to increase its outreach efforts and environmental education offerings to even more minority and economically-disadvantaged families in 2009. In all, the “This Land is Your Land” project reached approximately 3,500 children and 1,300 adults.  We’d also like to thank the 77 volunteers who made this project happen by donating a total of 535 hours.

During the course of the project, SRT nurtured several valuable relationships with other local organizations who are committed to the education of our youth: Pro-Youth/HEART (after-school program dedicated to building opportunities for youth success in Tulare County), SCICON (the outdoor school of science and conservation, operated by the Tulare County Office of Education), WildPlaces (a non-profit organization focused on volunteer-driven restoration projects and youth outdoor education). We hope to further develop these partnerships in an effort to build a network of resources and opportunities that will enable us to strengthen each of our organizations’ youth programs, and more importantly, inspire even more kids in the area.

Other notable 2009 SRT accomplishments made possible by the Alcoa Foundation’s support:

  • SRT continued its partnership with the Tulare County Office of Education to welcome more than 1,000 elementary school students as participants in the Kaweah Oaks Preserve field trip program.  SRT Education Coordinator Laura Childers expanded curriculum to include content relating to Language Art and History as part of SRT’s effort to help prepare students for California’s Standardized Testing and Reporting program.  In addition, SRT translated field trip activity sheets into Spanish to make the field trips more accessible to English as a Second Language (ESL) students and chaperones.
  • SRT presented eleven 2-hour seminars to 200 Pro-Youth/HEART teachers on current environmental issues, and taught the teachers how to incorporate these themes into grade-appropriate lesson plans and activities.  As a result, this innovative curriculum will reach more than 2,300 youth enrolled in Pro-Youth/HEART program throughout the 2009-2010 school year.
  • SRT gave away 100 free SRT memberships to families with children enrolled in the Pro-Youth/HEART after school program.  By keeping in touch with these 100 families, SRT hopes to keep them informed about the natural world around them and engaged with the free outdoor recreation opportunities available at Kaweah Oaks Preserve.

About Alcoa Foundation
Alcoa Foundation is a nonprofit U.S. corporate foundation with assets of approximately US$370 million. Its mission is to actively invest in the quality of life in Alcoa communities worldwide. Throughout its history, Alcoa Foundation has been a source of positive community change and enhancement, with over US$490 million invested since 1952.