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 Outdoor Education Foundation Receives Sempra Energy Foundation Environmental Champions Grant

​The Sempra Energy Foundation has awarded a $35,000 Environmental Champions grant to the Outdoor Education Foundation, a San Diego non-profit whose mission is to connect children to science and nature through outdoor education programs offered by the San Diego County Office of Education.

The Sempra Energy Foundation’s Environmental Champions grant will fund an 8th Grade Junior Counselor/ Service Learning Program and the post-construction re-vegetation of the Camp Cuyamaca campus.

“We are so grateful to be awarded support from the Sempra Energy Foundation,” said Scott Riddick, President of the Outdoor Education Foundation. “More than fifty 8th grade students will benefit from scholarships allowing them to participate in the Outdoor School Junior Counselor program at Camp Cuyamaca. And those students will in turn help hundreds and hundreds of additional youngsters gain a greater appreciation of their environment. The
Outdoor School Junior Counselors will gain knowledge in science and strengthen their leadership skills and self confidence at a critical age. This grant will inspire students to explore careers in science and become environmental champions in their communities.”

Camp Cuyamaca and the Outdoor School program is known to generations of San Diegans as Sixth Grade Camp. Nearing its 65th Anniversary, the San Diego County Office of Education’s Outdoor School program is recognized as a national leader in outdoor education, providing students a unique opportunity to combine environmental education and awareness with hands-on science and character development.

Recent upgrades and expansion at Camp Cuyamaca left more than 60% of the campus barren. As part of the grant, the Outdoor Education Foundation will organize a native plant re-vegetation project. The 8th Grade Junior Counselors will take part in the re-vegetation project as part of their service-learning curriculum, and will earn up to 40 hours of community service work. The project’s progress will be documented by students and teachers with
photos updated on the Outdoor Education Foundation’s website (www.oefoundation.org) throughout the year.