June 14th, 2021
Teenage EcoExplorers, increased Everglades Literacy in local schools and climate change exhibits part of new immersive program
Combining the forces of two of South Florida’s leading science organizations, The Everglades Foundation and the Museum of Discovery and Science today announced a partnership designed to educate and empower the next generation of environmental stewards for America’s Everglades. The new program, called Everglades EcoExplorers, is also funded by the Children's Services Council of Broward County and AECOM.
The Everglades Foundation, the leading non-profit organization dedicated to restoring and protecting America’s Everglades, and the Museum of Discovery and Science, which serves as Broward County’s dynamic hub for dialogue and innovation regarding resiliency and community solutions to the impact of climate change, will launch a comprehensive education and workforce development initiative designed to expand hands-on Everglades learning in classrooms for K-12 students, in the community and at the Museum for visitors of all ages.
A new Environmental Sustainability Manager at the Museum will lead the initiative, which is based on The Everglades Foundation’s award-winning Everglades Literacy Program. Along with expanding the number of K-8 schools and sites implementing the science-based curriculum, a new Everglades EcoExplorers program, through working with Broward County Public Schools, will recruit 25 high school students to take active roles in educating students and the general public regarding Everglades restoration and protection.
The Everglades Foundation’s research will be integrated into immersive exhibits, lectures and outreach programs to inspire dialogue and innovative thinking among Museum visitors and program participants, particularly around climate change issues and how to create a more resilient community. As a carbon bank, the Everglades is a vital tool to combat climate change. It also is the source of fresh water for nine million Floridians.
“Every Florida child should grow up understanding the importance of America’s Everglades and feeling connected to the three million-acre, one-of-a-kind ecosystem in our backyard,” said Jennifer Diaz, Vice President of Education for The Everglades Foundation. “Our future depends on an Everglades-literate citizenry empowered to make well-informed decisions. This partnership is a giant step in ensuring that happens here in South Florida.”
“As a center for science and resiliency, it is MODS’ essential responsibility to immerse students in impactful conversations and experiences while exposing them to careers for the future of our community,” said Joseph P. Cox, president and CEO of the Museum of Discovery and Science. “Partnering with The Everglades Foundation will help move the dialogue forward and inspire students to action. Exposure to environmental education helps fuel workforce development in South Florida.”
The Everglades Foundation’s Everglades Literacy Program is the only education program that utilizes an integrated approach to Everglades K-12 learning to ensure future generations of Floridians understand the ecological and economic value of protecting America’s Everglades. Welcoming 400,000 visitors annually, the Museum of Discovery and Science serves as the official interpretive site of the South Florida Ecosystem Restoration Task Force, dedicated to restoring the Everglades ecosystem through the education of South Florida’s residents and visitors.
To learn more about the Everglades Literacy Program's free Everglades curriculum and programs, visit: www.evergladesliteracy.org