Please fund our Mercer County High School Conservation Internship Program!
Over the past year, the Friends of Hopewell Valley Open Space has been delighted to provide conservation opportunities to the next generation through an innovative and creative high school internship program. In January 2020, we hope to greatly expand the program by partnering with incredible organizations and increase the number of participants.
This amazing project engages high school students from Hopewell Valley and the Boys & Girls Clubs of Mercer County to team up on paid internships performing land conservation work throughout Mercer County. We are thrilled that students collaborating from a variety of backgrounds can take advantage of the unique opportunity to reap both social and environmental benefits.
Students receive leadership and ecological training from a team of experts (see photos) to address growing environmental needs for clean water, air, and protected habitat. Learn more about the program here. The skills they learn are transferable for future educational and employment opportunities. Bonus: studies show that being outdoors improves physical and emotional wellness.
We are reaching out to you now because our expected source of program funding is no longer available, and we need your help to offer this innovative program to the high school students in our area in the new year.
- learn to appreciate public lands that they may not normally encounter.
- assist with green infrastructure projects, promote future action, and develop their conservation resumes.
- Work collaboratively with other students, nonprofits and municipal organizations.
- improve quality of life, confidence, and college and career readiness.
Participating organizations and the community will:
- long term: build future capacity by expanding the number of people using and stewarding the land.
- short term: Interns will improve our lands through land stewardship such as: performing restorations, building trails, monitoring water quality, engaging in citizen science, identifying invasive and rare species.
New Jersey Conservation Foundation's Parker Grant has generously funded a portion of internship pay but we’re trying to make up the difference so we can include more students and the full roster of conservation partners representing a variety of careers and disciplines. We need your help.