The Issue: Relationship Between Youth and the Environment
According to the Arizona Association for Environmental Education, the best way to solve complex environmental issues is to start educating future leaders. Reports gathered by the Tucson Botanical Gardens demonstrate that this relationship is reciprocal. Environmental education has been shown to foster leadership skills, enhance problem-solving abilities, and back up traditional school learning to transform students into stewards of nature.
The Campaign: Distribute Butterfly Education Kits
If this Grassroots campaign raises $400, then Tucson Botanical Gardens can distribute Sonoran butterfly kits to 10 elementary schools. Students learn about the butterfly life cycle by raising a group of caterpillars in an included enclosure with provided food, or studying educational materials such as a dried butterfly, photographs, and laminated wings. A 21-page resource guide complements the lesson with background information and grade-specific exercises. Each additional $40 raised will fund a butterfly kit for another school. Smith & Dale Nonprofit and Philanthropic Counsel will match each $10 donation up to $400 by adopting two butterflies.
Smith & Dale Nonprofit and Philanthropic Counsel will match each $10 donation up to $400 with the adoption of two butterflies. To celebrate the launch of Groupon Grassroots, Groupon will provide a $1,000 kickoff grant to this campaign.
Tucson Botanical Gardens
Tucson Botanical Gardens maintains an oasis in the desert. In 1974, Bernice Porter gave the garden its permanent home on the site of her personal property, hoping it would give others the pleasure it gave her. The garden grew and flourished into a horticultural center and sanctuary for wild birds comprising more than 17 distinct gardens and greenhouses. Its grounds host a butterfly garden with species from 11 countries and a native-crops garden with traditional crops grown by the Tohono O'odham people.
Now Tucson Botanical Gardens hopes to use its beauties to educate community members about gardening and their relationship with nature. With programs and events, such as a conservation festival and bird exhibit, members promote responsible and appropriate use of plants and water in their desert environment.
Tucson Botanical Gardens
Nearly a half century ago, horticulturist Harrison G. Yocum opened his backyard to the public, displaying a bounteous collection of cacti and palms. After a few relocations, expansions, and the establishment of a nonprofit charter, Tucson Botanical Gardens now spreads 17 distinct plots across more than 5 acres. A delicate rumble hearkens the arrival of the Garden Railway miniature train, which winds through gardens uniquely dedicated to birds, butterflies, wildflowers, and traditional Native American crops. Admission—which is free for garden members and children younger than 3—grants passage to five different tours, and groups of 10 or more can arrange self-guided or docent-led tours at a discounted rate. If visitors awaken their appetites by savoring aromas from the onsite herb garden or by staring at clouds shaped like canned goods, they can dig in at the Gardens' Café, where sun spills through a slatted gazebo onto iron tables loaded with roast-beef baguettes and mexican tortilla soup.