The Alabama 4-H center in Columbiana recently closed a $10,000.00 grant they receieved through Cawaco RC&D and the Alabama Cooperative Extension System. The grant provided scholarships to students throughout the Cawaco 5-County area. The educational objective was to promote environmental education and leadership skills through hands-on experimental learning. Topics studied included entimology, forest ecology, herpetology, macro invertebrate study, orinthology, rivers and reservoirs, and outdoor recreation. The scholarships allowed over 2500 students from Walker, Shelby and Jefferson counties to attend the science school program. Without the funding, none of the participants would have been able to attend these events.
Cawaco RC&D provides project and grant management services to assist Shelby County in implementing an ADEM 319 grant to improve water quality for Buxahatchee Creek. Glenn Littleton, project coordinator provided coordination and support for the installation of a peat-based alternative wastewater treatment system for Minooka Park. Read more about the project in the Clanton Advertiser on June 23, 2011.
Senior Mentor 80 year old Mike Culotta set a personal goal of training 200 seniors to use the computer. He worked for over 290 hours SO FAR on the project and taught 150 learners on two computers provided by Cawaco RC&D Council Challenge Grant. The entire project educated 514 learners this year.
The $2500.00 grant was matched with over $5,000 in Volunteer service, making the Total Project Value a very impressive $7,709.64.
Grant Recipient is:
Middle Alabama Area Agency on Aging Office
15863 Highway 25
Calera, AL 35040
June 13, 2011
The Clanton Advertiser reported that Cawaco RC&D Council will provide a $9,000 grant for storm related items for Chilton County. The money will be used for repair and maintenance on the weather sirens, according to Commissioner Allen Caton.
Cawaco RC&D Accepted in the Inaugural Class for Standards of Excellence
Cawaco RC&D has been accepted to enter the inaugural class for the Standards of Excellence program promoted by the Alabama Association of Nonprofits (www.alabamanonprofits.org.) The National Standards of Excellence Institute was formed to promote the highest standards of ethics and accountability in nonprofit governance, management and operations. It provides nonprofits with clear benchmarks to measure performance against the highest standards of nonprofit governance and management, delivers educational programming and technical assistance, and grants the Seal of Excellence to organizations that complete a rigorous peer review process.
Cawaco RC&D Council to Unveil Trail Building Tool Trailer
WHAT: The Cawaco Resource, Conservation and Development Council will unveil its tool utility trailer for building and maintaining public trails
WHEN: Tuesday, May 17 at 10 a.m.
WHERE: Red Mountain Park, 277 Lyon Lane, Birmingham
SIGNIFICANCE: The trailer and tools will provide the equipment needed for volunteers to build or maintain public trails in Blount, Chilton, Jefferson, Shelby and Walker counties providing new recreational opportunities in Alabama at little or no cost to the taxpayers.
The equipment has already been used for debris removal at Ruffner Mountain Nature Center in Birmingham.
The trailer and tools were bought with a $10,000 grant obtained through the Alabama Department of Economic and Community Affairs. Funding was provided from Federal Highway Administration’s Recreational Trails Program.
On April 15, 2011 some federally funded programs were zeroed out. This budget cut to the USDA Natural Resource Conservation Service (NRCS) program resulted in the removal of federal support for RC&D Councils across the country.
Federal funds, a coordinator, and an office support were eliminated as the NRCS cut the Resource, Conservation and Development (RC&D) Council collaboration from its budget. Funding from USDA’s Natural Resource Conservation Service provided the Cawaco council with a coordinator, Heidi Richards; 2 vehicles for program implementation; and office rent and expenses.
Cawaco RC&D Council will continue to receive financial support from administrative fees from grants, Challenge and ACES grant administration, and water partnership support. At this time, the council does not use fund raising events for project support.
The Cawaco RC&D mission, vision and goals will remain the same, and the 501(c)3 organization will continue to serve Blount, Chilton, Jefferson, Shelby, and Walker with four board members from each county. Collaboration with other entities – such as Soil and Water Conservation Districts – will also continue.
Former Cawaco RC&D Project Coordinator, Heidi Richards, has been transferred to the NRCS Bessemer Field Office. Projects such as the promotion of green technology for Chilton County, led by Heidi and council member Tracia Bussey will need to be re-evaluated.
Cawaco is the recipient of a $10,000 ADECA RTP Grant for an area-wide trailer filled with tools for use in building and maintaining trails. Lee Higginbotham with Advanced Mower helped put together an excellent 6×12 trailer with power and hand tools. After tool safety training, staff from Ruffner Mountain Nature Preserve, Turkey Creek Nature Preserve and Red Mountain Park are all eligible to use the tools.