Long-time LandPaths' Volunteer Matt Lopez has won the Sonoma County Environmental Youth award! Matt won the award for his noteworthy progress from a novice volunteer into an enthusiastic and inspiring summer counselor with Landpaths' Owl Camp.
LandPaths was eager to nominate Matt Lopez for the award, and proud (though not at all surprised) when he won. Here is our nomination statement in full:
"Matt Lopez, now a Parks and Recreation student at Santa Rosa Junior College, has been quietly but confidently serving as an environmental role model and mentor to local youth for the past five years. We first got to know Matt when he participated as a mentor in LandPaths' outdoor education program --IOOBY (In Our Own Back Yard). Part of the Windsor High Environmental Core, Matt came to Riverfront Park dozens of times throughout the 2009-10 school year to work with 6th grade students. While we have worked with hundreds of youth in this age-range, Matt has stood out as someone who was eager to spread his passion of the outdoors to younger kids.
In 2010, Matt took great initiative and dedicated three full weeks of his summer to becoming a LandPaths' Owl Camp intern. We couldn't offer much in the way of reciprocity, yet got the impression that there was nowhere that Matt would rather be. The kids just fell in love with his enthusiasm. In 2011, he returned, accepting as compensation only a scholarship for his younger brother. In 2012, we were pleased to hire Matt as a Junior Counselor.
Over the years we have been continually impressed with Matt's dedication to the field of environmental education and to passing on a bit of his love of the outdoors to other young people. More importantly, we've all been touched by what that actually LOOKS LIKE -- floating upside down in Mark West Creek, fully clothed, with a net, blowing bubbles, bringing crawdads to the surface and being met with squeals of delight from all sides. It is with great gratitude to him, and hope for the future, that we nominate Matt Lopez for the Environmental Youth Award."
LandPaths is delighted to be offering the Camper in Leadership Training (C.I.L.T.) Program once again at Owl Camp in 2013! Owl Camp is a nature-based day camp for students aged 5-13, located at Rancho Mark West off St. Helena Road. The C.I.L.T. program is designed specifically for students aged 11-13 who are looking for a challenging outdoor camp experience where they can learn new skills, enhance leadership potential, and foster a lasting sense of community among their peers.
Campers in this age group will engage in a week-long advanced project, such as building a raft, as well as serve as mentors to the younger campers. C.I.L.T.S are the ONLY YOUTH invited to camp out at the property on Thursday Night, a meaningful opportunity that allows for sunrise canoe-adventures, night-hikes and sleeping under the stars (or in a tent!)
Click here to learn more about Owl Camp and the Camper in Leadership Training Program. Space in this program is limited. Scholarships & Transportation assistance may be available.
In this photo, a group of last year's Campers in Leadership Training, having met their challenge, prepare to launch a camp-made raft, using paddles they designed themselves!
To steward the land is to take care of the land. During our Stewardship themed field trip, we rolled up our sleeves, got our hands dirty, and took action to take care of the earth. We accomplished many restoration activities together. Ask your child what they did to take care of the land at their IOOBY field site. To give you a better idea, here are some examples of work we did:
(1) PLANTING NATIVE PLANTS provide food and habitat to native animals. What native plants did your child plant? How is this helping nature?
(2) REMOVING INVASIVE WEEDS that threaten native plants. They come in from other places and tend to take over- pushing native plants out of the landscape forever. Did your child remove an invasive weed? Which one? Was removal fun... challenging?
(3) TRAIL BUILDING is an important way to insure that humans can continue to enjoy nature. Some IOOBY students got to build or improve trails. Did your child build a trail? What did it look like? How did they do it?
(4) CREATING CREEK FLAGS is a way for IOOBY students to share their artistic talents while spreading positive thoughts for the world. Creek flags are pieces of fabric that students painted in groups. Each flag represented with paintings and words, ways to care for the land: "Don't Litter," "Keep our Water Clean," and "Take Care of the Earth," and more. What message did your child share? What did they draw? Who did they work with?
Thanks to our Sponsors:
El cuidar la tierra es el protegerla. Durante nuestro paseo, nos subimos las mangas de la camisa, nos ensuciamos las manos, y tomamos acción en el cuidado de la tierra. Juntos hicimos trabajo de restauración. Pregúntele a su hijo que hiso para proteger la tierra en su paseo con IOOBY. Para darle mejor idea, aquí hay unos ejemplos del trabajo que realizamos.
Las plantas nativas son aquellas que han estado en California por mucho tiempo. Lo que quiere decir que los animales nativos han crecido dependiendo de estas como alimento y hogar. ¿Qué plantas nativas su hijo planto? ¿Cómo esto ayuda a la naturaleza?
Las hierbas invasivas atacan a las planas nativas. Llegan de otros lugares y se reproducen muy rápido removiendo las plantas nativas. ¿Su hijo removió hierbas invasivas? ¿Qué tipo? ¿Fue divertido…difícil?
Construir senderos es importante para asegurar que los seres humanos continuemos disfrutando de la naturaleza. Algunos de los estudiantes construyeron a arreglaron algunos senderos. ¿Su hijo construyo un sendero?
Esta es una manera en la cual los estudiantes de IOOBY comparten su talento artístico y al mismo tiempo envían un mensaje positivo al mundo. Las banderas son pedazos de tela que los estudiantes pintaron. Cada bandera con diferentes pinturas y letras representa las formas de cuidar la tierra. “no tirar basura”, “mantenga nuestra agua limpia”, “cuide la tierra”, y más. ¿Qué mensaje compartió su hijo? ¿Qué pinto? ¿Con quién trabajo?
From the Annadel Half Marathon committee:
"This year’s Annadel Half Marathon is dedicated to Jonathon Glass. The members of the Annadel Half Marathon committee are proudly dedicating a portion of race proceeds to LandPaths’ memorial tribute in honor of Glass. If you would like to match our contributions to this projects, we will be accepting cash and check donations at the race and during packet pick-up at Fleet Feet Sports on April 11 and 12, 2013. The Annadel Half Marathon will take place April 13, 2013 at 8:00 a.m., for additional details refer to our website, www.AnadelHalf.com, or call Fleet Feet Sports at 707.569.1494."