ECAP — a grant-funded summer program for middle school students — is excited to engage students in local grassroots activism and advocacy this summer!
We will introduce students to ongoing community and regional efforts related to Everglades restoration in Martin County and provide opportunities for students to learn the nuts and bolts of community engagement as part of ongoing Everglades restoration projects and related work.
Meet your ECAP Team!
Nathaniel Osborn is the chair of the history department at The Pine School and has taught social studies at the secondary and college level since 2003. His book Indian River Lagoon: An Environmental History (University Press of Florida) received the 2017 Stetson Kennedy Book Award from the Florida Historical Society.
Osborn is a Trustee of the Martin County Library System. He is a popular speaker at regional events, and his community service also includes a long stint as the Chair of the Martin County Historic Preservation Board.
Kenny Russell is a lifelong and multi-generational resident of Florida with roots going back 6 generations. He grew up with lots of outside time and developed quite a passion for Florida ecology and Florida history. Currently, Mr. Russell is teaching science and social studies to middle schoolers at Murray Middle School in Stuart, where has been an instructor for 6 years. In addition to his role at Murray Middle School, Kenny is the lead instructor for an after-school STEM lab, as well as coach of a LEGO first robotics team.
Program Dates and Outline
This program is free of charge and will run on Tuesdays and Thursdays starting at 10 a.m. both days. Tuesdays will run until 11:30 a.m., and Thursday will end at varying times, depending on the field trip. The ECAP program will run for 6 weeks from the week of June 14th through the week of July 19th.
Tuesday’s format will be virtual — via an online platform — workshop-style discussions that will give attendees a foundational knowledge of Everglades Restoration and local water issues and will be supported by Guest Speakers from local organizations.
Thursday’s format will be in-person field trips where feasible given COVID-19 restrictions and the possible presence of cyanobacteria blooms in our local waters.
The program will culminate with a final advocacy project of the student’s choosing. This may be a letter to the editor, supporting a rally, giving public comment at a local meeting, etc.
|Dates and Workshop Topic||Guest Speakers|
Tuesday’s @ 10:30 via Zoom
|Field Trips |
Thursday’s @ 10:30 – locations detailed below
“What are the Everglades?”
|June 15th |
Virtual Tour of the Everglades
“How are the Everglades threatened?”
Schooner Lily (St Lucie Estuary) – Shepards Park at 600 SW Ocean Boulevard. Please park in the second parking lot by the playground and seawall. Boarding begins promptly 15 minutes before departure, and the sail will leave at the scheduled time of 10:30 a.m.
“Who is trying to help?”
|June 29th |
Mark Perry – Florida Oceanographic Society
Florida Oceanographic Society – we will meet at the Coastal Center on Hutchinson Island at 10:30 a.m.
“Who is in charge of the Everglades?”
Jacqui Thurlow Lippisch – South Florida Water Management District
Field trip: Lake Okeechobee – Pending
“How are they trying to help?”
Mike Connor – Indian Riverkeeper
We’ll meet along the river – more details to follow soon
|Week 6: |
“I can help protect the Everglades by doing__________”
Maggie Hurchalla – Environmental Activist
|July 22nd |
A choice to participate in the following:
River’s Coalition Meeting