Mission: The Urban Ecology Center fosters ecological understanding as inspiration for positive change, neighborhood by neighborhood.
Our Environmental Community Centers:
Provide outdoor science education for urban youth. Protect and use public natural areas, making them safe, accessible and vibrant. Preserve and enhance these natural areas and their surrounding waters. Promote community by offering resources that support learning, recreation, stewardship and camaraderie.
Geographic areas served: Milwaukee, WI
Programs: Provide outdoor science education for urban youth. The urban ecology center partners with schools to provide 24 half-day field trips annually which provide hands-on science and environmental education programs designed to complement the schools' science curricula and connect students to the natural world in the city of milwaukee. Preschool, after school and summer camp programs complement the school program throughout the year. Over 31,000 children were served through these educational programs.
promote community by offering resources that support learning, volunteerism, stewardship, recreation and camaraderie. The urban ecology center's active community centers engage adults, youth and families in opportunities to connect with each other through programming and volunteer opportunities. 24,000 youth and adults participated in community programs such as birthday parties and festivals. An additional 22,000 people visited our centers through unstructured activities and 14,000 people visited as part of facility rental events. Our robust volunteer program served 5,174 volunteers.
protect and use public natural areas, making them safe, accessible and vibrant. The center's citizen science program has turned a once crime-ridden park into a field research site for local colleges and universities. A variety of research opportunities are available to the public, including surveys of birds, bats, mammals, turtles, etc. , as well as vegetation surveys and park use surveys. Urban adventures provides canoeing, kayaking, snowshoeing, rock climbing, skiing and biking outings. Over 12,000 adults and youth participated in these program offerings.
prepare land for future mission impact. Preserve and enhance public natural areas and their surrounding waters. Practice and model environmentally responsible behaviors.
The Urban Ecology Center is located in a Milwaukee Park, Riverside Park.
This park was not being kept up and was not used by many people.
The UEC changed that. The park is now a vibrant place.
Many children who have never had the opportunity to investigate the
outdoors are thrilled to come to UEC.
These kids learn about trees,plants,birds,insects,wildlife and how to
care for all these. They love it! The Urban Ecology Center is a good
thing for the neighborhhood too. I know, because I grew up here, and this was MY park.
Twenty years ago I lived near Riverside Park and I was among the few who ventured into it. The park was poorly maintained and considered dangerous. I have watched the Urban Ecology Center grow and the Park become inviting and popular. I have worked with UEC staff when writing my book about the need for natural areas in cities to help connect people with nature and develop an environmental ethic. They do a remarkable job and I consider the UEC one of the best things happening in Milwaukee, a model for environmental education that should be emulated in every city.