02 Oct FoLAR Named LA 2050 Grant Winner and AEOE, Ten Strands, and CAELI Environmental Education Org of the Year
FoLAR’s K-12 STEM education programs provide life-changing environmental educational experiences that inspire curiosity for the LA River, a lifelong connection to the natural world, and a deeper understanding of STEM careers.
In just the 2022-2023 school year, FoLAR’s education team served over 7,800 K-12 students through programs like our Day of Discovery field trips, Source-to-Sea learning and scholarship program, and visits from FoLAR’s River Rover – our mobile education center and LA River museum. The first cohort of FoLAR’s River Fellows also welcomed 30 high-school students, particularly youth underrepresented in STEM and conservation, to participate in a paid, year-long STEM workforce development program. We’re proud and excited to share that our team’s dedication to LA youth has paid off with several milestone accomplishments so far in 2023.
In April of this year, FoLAR was named the 2023 Environmental Education Organization of the Year by California’s Association for Environmental and Outdoor Education (AEOE), Ten Strands, and the California Environmental Literacy Initiative (CAELI). AEOE’s executive director Estrella Risinger shared, “Friends of the Los Angeles River does incredible work in their community, the region, and across the state. The Organization of the Year Award recognizes an outstanding organization advancing the impact of environmental and outdoor education in California in a meaningful way by offering innovative programs, following research-based best practices, and promoting equitable access to environmental learning. FoLAR’s mission and programs embody these principles fully.”
Last week, LA2050 announced FoLAR as their grants challenge winner in the K-12 STEAM Education category. This grant will support our Source-to-Sea program which offers K-12 students access to immerse themselves in standards-based STEM education and experiential learning across several touch points: in-class curriculum, a visit from the River Rover, and an interactive field trip to the LA River focusing students on the interconnectivity of our urban ecosystem and the possibilities of various STEM careers. Priority for this program is given to schools with the highest percentage of low-income students, a group that has historically been under-represented in STEM.
Click below to learn more about these accomplishments and join us in celebrating our continued opportunity to serve K-12 students in LA – connecting them to the River that runs through their neighborhoods. You can also directly support FoLAR’s education programs today by donating at folar.org/donate.
Friends of the Los Angeles River is a 501c3 nonprofit whose mission is to build capacity for communities, students, and future leaders to advocate for nature, climate, and equity on the Los Angeles River. FoLAR is a leading force in educating youth, guiding policy, and connecting communities to the River.
LA2050 (www.la2050.org) is an award-winning initiative driving and tracking progress toward a shared vision for the future of Los Angeles. LA2050 has been named Nonprofit Organization of the Year (Growing) by the Los Angeles Business Journal, and has won a 2023 Shorty Award for its email newsletter and three Telly Awards for social video and branded content. We are centered around five unique goals that in 2050 Los Angeles will be the best place to learn, create, play, connect, and live. Connect with @LA2050 on Twitter, Instagram, Threads, Facebook, and LinkedIn, and sign up to receive our newsletter, which includes social impact job listings and events.
About the Goldhirsh Foundation
At the Goldhirsh Foundation, (www.goldhirshfoundation.org), we connect the dots between the best emerging innovations and the financial, social, and human capital to make them thrive.
About the Association for Environmental and Outdoor Education (AEOE)
AEOE’s mission is to advance the impact of environmental and outdoor education in California. For more than six decades, AEOE has served as the professional association for environmental and outdoor educators throughout the state. AEOE’s work aims to convene program providers to build a diverse, equitable, and inclusive network of skilled practitioners; provide learning opportunities that are aligned with best practices and content relevant to our field; promote high-quality environmental education among the varied programs across the state; and advocate for all young people to experience meaningful learning opportunities outdoors. For more information, visit http://aeoe.org.
About Ten Strands
Ten Strands is a California–based nonprofit established in 2012. Their mission is to strengthen the partnerships and strategies that will bring climate and environmental literacy to all of California’s TK–12 students. They operate with a small, diverse, and nimble staff and strategic partners throughout the state. Ten Strands utilizes the largest and most diverse institution in California—the public school system—to impact 58 county offices of education, more than 1,000 school districts, approximately 10,000 individual schools, over 300,000 teachers, and 5.8 million children. For more information, visit http://tenstrands.org.
The California Environmental Literacy Initiative (CAELI), led by Ten Strands, works statewide with guidance from a leadership council to create systems change in support of environmental literacy with a focus on access, equity, and cultural relevance for all students. For more information, visit http://ca-eli.org.