Columbia, SC—Three Richland County schools will receive funding for conservation education projects this spring, thanks to funding provided by the Richland Soil and Water Conservation District (RSWCD) and the City of Columbia. The RSWCD offers Conservation Education Mini-Grants in amounts up to $1,000 each fall and spring to support a variety of conservation efforts at local schools. Additionally, the City of Columbia offers $500 Clean Stream Columbia Awards for conservation projects that specifically address water quality and water quality education at schools located within City limits.
This spring’s awardees include:
- Caughman Road Elementary School -- $500 Clean Stream Columbia Award and $500 Conservation Education Mini-Grant to support rainwater harvesting, composting, and vegetable gardening in the Interactive Children’s Garden (Project Lead: Amber Melbourne, Parent Volunteer)
- Longleaf Middle School -- $500 Conservation Education Mini-Grant to support the planting of native vines for pollinator habitat, erosion control, and inquiry-based learning (Project Lead: Ray Greiner, ZooBot Science Teacher)
- St. John Neumann Catholic School -- $500 Conservation Education Mini-Grant to reduce the use of plastic by providing reusable water bottles for students (Project Lead: David Kenga, Science Lab Teacher)
At Caughman Road Elementary School, recipient of this year’s Clean Stream Columbia Award, students will install rain barrels to collect rainwater for reuse and reduce stormwater runoff and erosion. “This Clean Stream Award is exactly the kind of project we want to support,” says Mike Jaspers, Stormwater Manager for the City of Columbia. “It gives students an opportunity to learn about actions they can take to support clean water in their communities.” In addition to rainwater harvesting, students will also begin composting and expand their vegetable garden.
“Our youth are the future,” says RSWCD Commissioner Hemphill Pride, III, explaining why the RSWCD supports youth conservation education. “If they don’t learn to be good conservationists, our natural resources will be depleted and we’ll definitely be in trouble!”
Conservation Education Mini-Grants and Clean Stream Columbia Awards are available each fall and spring semester. For more information and application details, visit www.rcgov.us/rswcd or contact Chanda Cooper at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Conservation Districts are political subdivisions of state government under the local direction of five-member Boards of Commissioners. In South Carolina, Conservation District boundaries conform to County boundaries. The Richland Soil and Water Conservation District promotes the wise use of natural resources for the benefit of the citizens of Richland County.
Richland Soil and Water Conservation District
2020 Hampton Street, Room 3063A
Columbia, SC 29204
Phone (803) 576-2080
Fax (803) 576-2088