In these uncertain times, it is comforting to know that the next generation is ready and willing to step up to improve and protect our environment. With youth from small, locally organized groups to members of large organizations like Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts, a variety of conservation projects are happening around the county with safety precautions in place. Note: Participants standing close together in pictures are from the same family.
Most recently, Girl Scout Troop 70439 weeded and replanted the native plant pollinator demonstration garden in Highland Hills. Pollinators and human visitors will benefit as they enjoy the beautiful native shade plants.
Girl scouts and their families have done stream cleanups in Bedford (GSA Troop 70667/BSA Troop 399/Bedford), Bedford Heights (Troops 70439 & 70452), Solon and Warrensville Heights (Troop 70763/Solon). As more people use outdoor spaces, litter can build up and clog streams and the drains that lead to them. Cleanups in and around streams are great community projects.
Storm drain stenciling takes environmental action to the street. The Walton Hills day camp teen counselors and campers gained local TV recognition for their storm drain artwork at Thomas G. Wood park.
Girl Scout Troop 70291 (Orange), stenciled "Dump No Waste - Drains to Lake" and "Lake Erie Starts Here" near the storm drains at Orange Village Hall to raise awareness about how water and pollution running into storm drains finds its way - untreated, into nearby creeks and Lake Erie.
The Cleveland Storm Drain Art Project was a collaboration of many different types of youth groups. See You at the Top, Linda Zolten Wood (and family), Organic Connects, CMSD East Clark school and Bird Nerds, and Girl Scout Troops 71073 (Brecksville), 70219 (Seven Hills), and 70511 (Strongsville) all spread out to observe social distancing requirements while they worked to send a beautiful message to local residents and businesses.
In November, GSA Troop 70667 will be back out in the field planting trees in their hometown of Bedford. With so many dedicated young people and the adults that support them, the future of conservation is looking bright!
Blog author: Jacki Zevenbergen, Stormwater Education Program Manager