The primary purpose of our organization is to develop, promote and deliver science- based education and outreach programs that are central to restoration of the greater Everglades ecosystem.
We are the only non-profit in South Florida offering hands-on experiential learning opportunities in Everglades restoration and preservation:
· During the 2010- 2011 academic year our educators reached 25,064 students and adults in Palm Beach County.
Our hallmark Summer Intern Program provides selected college students with exposure to the highly complex and integrated nature of our environmental challenges. The 11-week program focuses on the Everglades ecosystem and the scientific, social, political, and multi-billion dollar restoration plan that will shape its future. At the conclusion of the program, the students present a research based project which demonstrates economic benefits, not only in terms of benefits to the natural environment, but also in terms of fiscal accountability and public support.
· Since 2002, almost half a million dollars in Scholarships and Internships have been awarded to students pursuing careers in environmental sciences.
· Over the past ten years, our volunteers have planted nearly 100,000 native trees and harvested approximately 4,000 pounds of cypress seeds used for germination and replanting of native trees.
The general objectives of our education programs are best conveyed through authentic, place-based learning experiences. This progressive approach to education is different from most traditional methods where, for example, instructors front-load students with information through a lecture, students listen and complete a worksheet. Our programs promote critical thinking, cooperative problem solving, and decision making skills for students. We place special emphasis on children, their health, their education and their connection to nature.