June 8, 2015
With more than 170,000 seedlings distributed to Pennsylvania students this spring, the program's eight-year total now exceeds 1,000,000.
State College, PA - More than 170,000 seedlings were distributed to students across Pennsylvania this spring through the Pennsylvania Game Commission's 'Seedlings For Schools' program. By participating in the program, students receive instruction from teachers on trees and their impact on wildlife habitat and gain valuable hands-on experience planting seedlings and observing their development.
Since the program's inception in 2008, more than 1,000,000 seedlings have been dispersed from the Pennsylvania Game Commission's Howard Nursery in Centre County. This year, 838 schools state-wide received shipments, nearly tripling growth from the program's first year. In total, 174,525 were distributed in 2015 with 174,425 shipped from the nursery.
Enrollment in 'Seedlings For Schools' is open to all PreK-12 schools in Pennsylvania. Any teacher can request seedlings and educational packets at no cost. Orders are generally taken in late February and early March with seedlings typically delivered by the end of April.
The Wildlife For Everyone Endowment Foundation covers all shipping and handling costs for the program. This year, generous donations from Mealey's Furniture Holdings, Inc., the Pennsylvania Forestry Association Jim Stiehler Memorial Fund and Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation helped offset a portion of the cost.
"There is no charge to schools participating in this program," said Wildlife For Everyone Endowment Foundation Executive Director Vern Ross. "We cherish the opportunity to enhance educational opportunities involving wildlife habitat for teachers and students in Pennsylvania."
Most of the seedlings were sent as part of the Seedlings for Your Class component of the program aimed primarily at younger students. Each class or grade level received enough silky dogwood or white pine seedlings for each student to take one home.
For older students, Seedlings to Develop Habitats provides a variety of seedlings to plant on school or community grounds to improve habitat or create an environmental area. In both components of the program, teachers receive an education package to help create lesson plans and supplement the hands-on experience for students.
"The Wildlife For Everyone Endowment Foundation has been instrumental in the program's success," said Pennsylvania Game Commission Executive Director Matt Hough. "We are very appreciative of the foundation's continued commitment to education, wildlife and its habitat."
The Wildlife For Everyone Endowment Foundation celebrates the rich heritage of Pennsylvania wildlife, habitat, sportsmen and sportswomen. The foundation was formed to provide all wildlife enthusiasts with a way to show their commitment through much-needed financial support. Funding benefits wildlife, wildlife habitat, scientific wildlife research and education, youth education and land preservation. The Foundation is a 501(c)3 nonprofit Foundation. More information about the Foundation's projects can be found at www.wildlifeforeveryone.org.
[ Return to News ]