Children & Youth,
Community Improvement & Capacity Building,
Physical & Earth Sciences,
Mission: Earth Force engages young people as active citizens who improve the environment and their communities now and in the future.
Results: Earth Force engages young people through their educators. In 2016, Earth Force trained and supported 395 educators in 215 schools to reach 28,999 young people. Our programs focus primarily on middle school students and their educators. Participating educators use our award winning Community Action and Problem-Solving Process that guides young people through a scientific progression of discovery and decision making to identify an environmental issue, determine the root cause of that problem, and then use community engagement strategies to bring about changes to local policy and practice to alleviate the problem. Earth Force combines mastery experiences and hands-on application to engage students in high quality applied learning experiences. Participating students are asked to apply learning from the classroom to problems they have discovered in their communities. This technique is a key element of learning to be problem solvers.
Target demographics: K-12 youth, educators
Direct beneficiaries per year: 28,999
Geographic areas served: United States
Programs: We develop young people with the knowledge, skills, and motivation to solve tough environmental problems. Earth Force does this by providing educators with the training and support they need to create an engaging, hands-on classroom that empowers students to solve environmental problems. Earth Force has a long history of developing materials and preparing educators to facilitate youth-led action projects as a part of their science course. Educators have guided students as they have leveraged data collection and field experience to launch systemic efforts that protected local nature preserves, convinced school systems to install water bottle filling stations, and installed hundreds of small green infrastructure projects.
How do you spark interest in students and volunteers that lasts and makes them want to learn more, do more, help more, and become more engaged as citizens? Put simply, Earth Force.
Over the last decade, Earth Force has made serving and improving our community exciting, easy, and fulfilling. It sets itself apart by empowering youth voice and creating long-term solutions that make sense for our community. After the program, students have reflected with comments like “this project helped us show adults that kids our age can do more than just play video games,” and “now I want to pick up litter when I see it and help teach others why they should, too.”
Earth Force takes the guesswork and headache out of typical non-profit issues such as funding, media, and support so we can focus on connecting with youth and cultivating better business and community practices. We cannot say enough about this organization’s culture and professional, passionate team. Earth Force’s collaborative approach and program framework are an icon for non-profits and for the future of environmental education in North America.