The Chicago Youth Centers Nature Team, which falls into the K-5 grade group, won their award for planning and developing an urban youth garden in North Lawndale. Part of an environmental classroom, students involved in the project learned to create and maintain a garden, which now produces fruit, vegetables and flowers for community use. The group also created a safe and serene place for themselves and their peers to use. The project also included a garden party, tours and activities for nearby residents.
In Indiana, Carmel Green Teen won their award based on their efforts to provide local students with micro-grants to promote environmental awareness. The organization, which is a non-profit entirely run by teens that fall into the 6-12 grade group, supported six projects, including an Earth Fair and a monarch butterfly habitat.
“EPA applauds the Chicago Youth Centers Nature Team and Carmel Green Teens for their outstanding projects,” Acting EPA Regional Administrator Robert Kaplan said. “These students are the environmental leaders of tomorrow and they are already making a visible difference in their own communities today.”