WE GOT A NEW LOGO!!
Cawaco (Cuh-Wah-CO) has often considered a name change, but one reason we haven't done it is because the name makes us easy to search! Now we have a new logo that we hope helps identify us as one of nine RC&D Councils in the state, and one of hundreds in the country. We are part of the State Association of RC&D Councils, one of the strongest councils in the Southeastern Association, and part of a National Association. If you are not in one of our counties, there IS a Council in your area!

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Cawaco works with local leadership to put projects on the ground in Alabama!

Check out this story about one of our favorite educators, Turkey Creek Nature Preserve manager Charles Yeager! Do you visit TCNP? If so, make sure to make a donation! It is not a state park and the city doesn’t pay for its management.

Another Cawaco project in the news!

We are SO PROUD to announce that Cawaco member Sheila Baker was chosen to win the Southeastern RC&D award for Board Member of the year!
We met Sheila Baker in the mid-2000’s, and approached her about becoming a Council Member. She was working for a Senior Service organization in Birmingham. She was delighted to serve, and has been an active and dedicated Board Member for at least 10 years. Sheila has always been involved in community improvement and social services, and has connected our council to many underserved, inner-city members and organizations throughout the Council area, and at times, beyond it.
Sheila rarely misses a Council meeting and if she does, she always tells us she will not be in attendance, and why. She attends every state board meeting possible, participates in board member trainings, and attends Southeastern as well as State Association annual meetings. She always volunteers or offers to help during meetings. Sheila serves on the Cawaco grant committee and carefully reads each application, often requesting further information before grading a grant. Sheila asks questions before making a decision.
Sheila actively seeks to connect Cawaco with organizations and projects in the area that affect the “invisible” members of society, whether they be handicapped, elderly, or disabled veterans. Sheila is one of the few Board Members who will tell others about the services Cawaco can provide them, and has been instrumental in establishing partnerships and projects with these organizations. Sheila has connected Cawaco with community gardens, women’s shelters, girl’s homes and the local chapter of the Disabled American Veterans. She has supported and created programs to teach seniors computer and job skills.
Sheila Baker is the only Cawaco Board Member who invested $100 in the Council and challenged the other Board members to contribute.
Sheila asks questions during meetings and reads the meeting documents and board policies prior to meetings; shares her knowledge of RC&D with everyone she meets; and is active in the State Association. Sheila demonstrates unwavering dedication and endlessly promotes the values of RC&D, and strengthens the State Association and the Southeast Association by providing diversity and identifying projects in areas we would not be able to access.

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Our latest Newsletter and 2019 list of all funded projects!

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Great stuff happening in Walker County!

We are proud to help M4A provide the training tools so first responders can provide the best care for citizens with dementia.

Want to be part of a Statewide Mural Trail?

Let us know about your community murals today!

The University of Alabama Center for Economic Development (UACED) wants to know about your community murals. We are in the process of creating a statewide mural trail and our first step is inventorying all existing murals in Alabama. After we have a good inventory of the existing ones we will then begin taking suggestions for locations for new ones! Deadline extended to August 16. If you have already submitted mural information please do not resubmit.

For more information contact:
Candace Johnson, 205-348-8338 or candace.c.johnson@ua.edu

https://www.uaced.ua.edu/mural.html

Thank a teacher

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have you ever heard about Camp Fletcher? It is a scout camp located in Bessemer, that was founded by the first African American Nurse in Alabama. We helped them get this sign so people will never forget the history of Camp Fletcher, or the great woman who founded it.

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We are always happy to support environmental education in Alabama! A big shout out to Charles Yeager and the spectacular job he does at Turkey Creek Nature Preserve, as a manager and as an educator.

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We are proud to support the agencies that protect and serve our communities. Many thanks to Rosa,Susan Moore, Allgood and the City of Oneonta for doing what it takes to keep their citizens (and first responders) safe.
One of these grants paid for heat-sensing cameras for the Oneonta Department if Public Safety, where the fire department shares the cameras with law enforcement. The cameras bring another level of “seeing”- whether it be to check a car seat to determine if an accident victim was ejected, to being able to detect footprints of a wandering child- this technology saves lives. One grant paid to help train EMT’s; another bought necessary equipment to lift trauma patients. All of these funds serve the public and save lives.
Without the support of local legislators, the funds would not exist for these projects. So we greatly value the local leadership in Blount County! Senators Shedd and Shellnut and Representative Standridge stay active and aware of needs in their districts.
We also want to make sure the gear our local heroes wear keeps them safe. We appreciate the brave first responders! Remember to thank an officer or a firefighter for what they do!

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BASIC sports and academic program’s objective is to close the learning loss gap through reading and math instruction in an environment that is friendly, fun, and actively engaging. BASIC is dedicated to improving student learning, creating positive relationships with peers, and increasing their self-esteem, self-confidence, and physical activities.
Cawaco is a proud supporter of this very successful program!

We are currently visiting projects! Here are some gardens that we supported through the free seed delivery and soil program. If you’d like to highlight your project on Facebook, call us! 205.623.0457

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The Smith Lake Civic Association coordinates cleanups and installs fish habitats around the lake. On June 20, members spent the day creating and installing structures made from bamboo, that fish will use for shelter and spawning purposes. Cawaco is proud to support this project!

The Smith Lake Civic Association coordinates cleanups and installs fish habitats around the lake. On June 20, members spent the day creating and installing structures made from bamboo, that fish will use for shelter and spawning purposes. Cawaco is proud to support this project!

Posted by Cawaco RC&D on Tuesday, June 25, 2019

Very excited to attend the Kings Bend canoe launch official opening yesterday! This was a long term project that is a benefit to Cleveland residents and all of Blount County!

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ANNOUNCEMENT!!
Cawaco Resource Conservation and Development Council, Inc. is seeking grant applications for the 2020 Challenge and Educational Grant Programs in Blount, Chilton, Jefferson, Shelby and Walker Counties of Central Alabama.

Qualifying applicants must be a non-profit residing in one of the above qualifying counties. More information about Cawaco can be accessed at www.cawaco.org, or by contacting the Programs Manager, Patti Pennington @ 205-623-0457 or grantfunds@live.com.

Applications are available online: https://www.cognitoforms.com/CawacoRCD/_2020CawacoGrantApplication


Proposals must be received prior to July 1, 2019

Bluff Park Elementary Project - Purchased 2 Zipgrow Farm walls and mounted them in a high traffic area next to the gym and cafeteria. They also purchased a portable tower garden along with books (related to gardening to be added to the Literacy Makerspace that CAWACO previously funded), growing supplies and some materials and items for students to cook with the produce grown.
According to Ms. Katie Collins, the powerhouse behind this project:
"The students used hydroponics in all areas of the curriculum. Hydroponics served as a springboard for deeper learning. Here is a video of an experience with hydroponics from one class' perspective. Please note that this is only one class' experience and that the funding that you have provided has reached an entire school-wide population."

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Here is a video the students of Bluff Park Elementary made that highlights what they've learned in Ms. Katie Collins class. THIS IS HOW YOU DO IT!!

Littering isn't cool but this PSA is!

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Thanks to Cawaco RC&D’s sponsorship of the Birmingham Schools Conservation Partnership, close to 80 students had the opportunity to walk through the Discovery Hall at the NaturePlex, and get up close to the gigantic rat snake coiled
tightly under tree bark; a sly snapping turtle lurking in the water; tree frogs clinging to branches; and a variety of other native reptiles and amphibians.

https://cawaco.org/mdocs-posts/a-field-trip-to-the-natureplex/

A BLAST from the PAST! Check out this presentation about the stream restoration we managed on Town Creek in Jasper way back in 2009.

We attended a special event in Shelby County last week! Little graduates received their diplomas!

Home Instruction for Parents of Preschool Youngsters (HIPPY) is a home-based, parent involvement program that brings early learning educational materials into the homes of those most at risk because of poverty, parents' limited education, and social isolation. It teaches parents as well as children.
A grant from Cawaco made it possible to expand the program by purchasing curriculum.
This curriculum was used to provide services to rural Shelby County. The HIPPY Grant Program operates under the supervision of Shelby County Board of Education Federal Programs, supervised by Mary Cooper.

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We do like to see children being exposed and learning about the natural world!

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We appreciate Senator Greg Reed for supporting the Smith Lake cleanup and for continuing to reach out to his constituents, find their needs, and contact Cawaco for assistance.
We appreciate Senator Reed and his dedication to the people of Alabama.

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Cawaco RC&D supported this project by funding the winners with cash prizes. Way to go to the winning teams and to Jefferson County Soil & Water for doing such a great job! Students in local schools competed to create an anti-litter video. I saw the winning video last night on a local station!

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Cawaco proudly supports the cleanup efforts and the fish habitat restoration by the Smith Lake Civic Association. Good job, guys!

So many children go home hungry on the weekends. This woman was determined to do something about it. This is one of the Walker County projects that Cawaco proudly supports.

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On May 1, the City if Hoover officially opened the EXPLORE playground and splash pad. It’s a big deal for the state of Alabama and Cawaco helped fund a portion of it! See what makes it so unique!

Cawaco is now accepting proposals for the 2020 Grant Cycle. Apply Today! The deadline is July 1.

Meet the State Association Council Member of the year, Cawaco’s own Sheila Baker! We are so proud of her!

We met Sheila Baker in the mid-2000’s, and approached her about becoming a Council Member. She was working for a Senior Service organization in Birmingham. She was delighted to serve, and has been an active and dedicated Board Member for at least 10 years. Sheila has always been involved in community improvement and social services, and has connected our council to many underserved, inner-city members and organizations throughout the Council area, and at times, beyond it.
Sheila rarely misses a Council meeting and if she does, she always tells us she will not be in attendance, and why. She attends every state board meeting possible, participates in board member trainings, and attends Southeastern as well as State Association annual meetings. Sheila stops by the office to catch up on Council business if she misses a meeting. She always volunteers or offers to help during meetings. Sheila serves on the Cawaco grant committee and carefully reads each application, often requesting further information before grading a grant. Sheila asks questions before making a decision.
In 2018, as in every year, Sheila actively connected Cawaco with organizations and projects in the area that affect the “invisible” members of society, whether they be handicapped, elderly, or disabled veterans. Sheila is one of the few Board Members who will tell others about the services Cawaco can provide them, and has been instrumental in establishing partnerships and projects with these organizations. Sheila has connected Cawaco with community gardens, women’s shelters, girl’s homes and the local chapter of the Disabled American Veterans. She has supported and created programs to teach seniors computer and job skills.
Sheila Baker is the only Cawaco Board Member who invested $100 in the Council and challenged the other Board members to contribute.
Sheila asks questions during meetings and reads the meeting documents and board policies prior to meetings; shares her knowledge of RC&D with everyone she meets; and is active in the State Association. Sheila demonstrates unwavering dedication and endlessly promotes the values of RC&D, and strengthens the State Association by providing diversity and identifying projects in areas we would not otherwise be able to access.

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Our Board Member and former Coordinator Paul Kennedy was added to the RC&D Hall of Fame on April 9. 2019! CONGRATULATIONS PAUL KENNEDY!

PAUL KENNEDY IS ADDED TO THE RC&D HALL OF FAME

Our Board Member and former Coordinator Paul Kennedy was added to the RC&D Hall of Fame on April 9. 2019! CONGRATULATIONS PAUL KENNEDY!

Posted by Cawaco RC&D on Thursday, April 11, 2019

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You are welcome! We are always happy to support first responders.

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Are you going or do you want to attend the Mumford & sons concert Saturday night- while ALSO volunteering for a really great cause? Volunteers watch 1/2 the show and work the other 1/2 with the r.Cup program. People pay $3 to rent a cup and fill it up with their drinks from the vendor over the night. At the end of the night you can take your cup home (it says Mumford & Sons) or return it and get your $3 back. So say you have 2 drinks, instead of throwing out 2 cups you throw out no cups!! Check out the r.Cup website and Facebook page and contact them with questions and if you would like to volunteer!
https://www.facebook.com/rcupworld/

Is Your Child Ready for Summer Camp?

Planning for summer care for your children can be overwhelming. You have to evaluate your options as early as the winter and prepare your child for the upcoming change in schedule. This can be particularly challenging if it is your child’s first summer camp experience. Luckily, the National Institutes of Health has helpful resources to help like how to pay for camp and different types of summer programs to make your research easier.

Are you or someone you know a veteran? Let them know about this conference! It's FREE but space is limited!

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More Educational Resources from the Smithsonian!

The tool trailer has a new look! The shop class at the Walker County Center for Technology put some fresh paint on it!

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We were happy to assist Manna Farms in getting their solar panels for their greenhouse!

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Applications Now Being Accepted for K-12 Student and Teacher Awards
Applications are due March 8, 2019
WASHINGTON — Applications are now being accepted for the President’s Environmental Youth Award (PEYA) and The Presidential Innovation Award for Environmental Educators Award (PIAEE).
EPA is seeking PEYA and PIAEE awards applications that highlight environmental stewardship in a variety of areas, including the following: environmental sustainability: a healthy school environment including projects that reduce food waste in school cafeterias; environmentally friendly agriculture practices; reducing human contributions to ocean litter and how to prevent it; school gardens; recycling; or using STEM to teach environmental education.
The PEYA program recognizes outstanding environmental stewardship projects by K-12 youth, promoting awareness of our nation's natural resources and encouraging positive community involvement.
PEYA is an annual award administered by the Office of Environmental Education at EPA. Since 1971, EPA has recognized young people for protecting our nation's air, water, land, and ecology. Each year the PEYA program honors a wide variety of projects developed by young individuals, school classes (kindergarten through high school), summer camps, public interest groups, and youth organizations to promote environmental awareness. Through environmental education and stewardship activities, students develop the critical thinking skills experience to make informed decisions and take responsible actions to address difficult environmental issues.
EPA will select up to two winners in each of EPA’s 10 Regions – one regional winner for Grades K-5 and one regional winner for Grades 6-12. Winners of this year’s awards will be invited to a ceremony in Washington, D.C. in mid-2019, and have their project mentioned on EPA’s website.
All student projects must be sponsored by at least one adult over the age of 21. The application and eligibility information are available at: https://www.epa.gov/education/presidents-environmental-youth-award.
For more information, please contact PEYA@epa.gov.
The PIAEE is an annual award program administered by the Office of Environmental Education at EPA. Since 1971, the EPA has recognized exceptional K-12 teachers employing innovative, interactive approaches to environmental education. It is one of the most important ways EPA and the Administration demonstrate commitment to environmental stewardship efforts created and conducted by our nation's teachers.
PIAEE awardees will receive an award of up to $2,500 to be used to further the recipient's professional development in environmental education. The teacher's local education agency will also receive an award of up to $2,500 to fund environmental educational activities and programs (and not for construction costs, general expenses, salaries, bonuses, or other administrative expenses).
EPA will select up to two winners in each of EPA’s 10 Regions.
For information on recent winners, visit: https://www.epa.gov/newsreleases/epa-honors-award-winning-environmental-education-teachers-and-students
Details regarding application requirements and descriptions of winning projects since 2002 can be found at: https://www.epa.gov/education/presidential-innovation-award-environmental-educators
For more information, please contact: PIAEE@epa.gov.

When you plant you garden, remember the flowers aren’t just for you! Don’t spray! Do not use systemic pesticides that get into the fiber of the plant. All poisons are toxic to bees and hummingbirds.

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Check out the presentations from the 2019 Alabama Rivers & Streams Network Annual Conference!

Hey they got our name right!! 👍🏽🙂