From 2013-2015, CommunityGrows participated with 17 Bay Area youth leadership and environmental stewardship organizations, all grantees with the S.D. Bechel Jr. Fund, under the consultation of LFA (Learning for Action) and the LEAPS (Leadership and Evaluation to Advance Programs Success) for Environmental Literacy Initiative. As a result of this work three cluster studies were generated to better understand how to most effectively: engage adolescents in supportive early employment experiences; foster meaningful engagements with the environment; and create safer and welcoming spaces for youth populations traditionally underrepresented in the environmental movement. Here is a document on what we learned.
CommunityGrows joined the Student Conservation Association, Youth Radio, Rising Sun Energy Center, to help produce the report on Workforce Development. We utilized workforce development models centered on cultivating youth leadership and voice in local environmental and social justice issues as platforms for preparing youth for future job opportunities, and fostering greater connection with the environment. For the development of our models we adapted to our local communities, engaged many different partners, and drew from diverse funding sources. Here is the Workforce Cluster Report.
Two other reports were generated by our S.D. Bechtel Jr. Fund grantee cohort which are offered here:
In August 2015 CommunityGrows presented at the ChangeScale Convening on Workforce Development with one of our grantee partners, Rising Sun Energy Center. CommunityGrows has also been a partner of ChangeScale and has promoted its objectives to build on the Green 2.0 conversation. This conversation started at the Environmental Education Congress where this report was generated. You can read the report The State of Diversity in Environmental Organizations. ChangeScale also strives to dive deeper to provide practical tips and tools that organizations and individual can enact to create a culture of inclusion and equity. ChangeScale provides a venue for networking and collaboration among the field of Environmental Education providers in San Francisco and the Monterey Bay Areas. At a recent ChangeScale meeting in Mountain View, CommunityGrows staff and other participants were introduced to the California Department of Education’s new publication entitled A Blueprint for Environmental Literacy: Educating Every Student In, About, and For the Environment. This report was produced by the California State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson’s statewide Environmental Literacy Task Force (ELTF). The Blueprint is a plan of action, unifying us with focus and purpose as well as concrete next steps. This is the definition of Environmental Literacy that is used in the report: An environmentally literate person has the capacity to act individually and with others to support ecologically sound, economically prosperous, and equitable communities for present and future generations. Through lived experiences and education programs that include classroom-based lessons, experiential education, and outdoor learning, students will become environmentally literate, developing the knowledge, skills, and understanding of environmental principles to analyze environmental issues and make informed decisions. CommunityGrows is thrilled to be on the cutting edge of the Environmental Literacy movement and welcomes your involvement.