Kingman and Heritage Islands are magical places. The two islands—the size of more than 45 football fields measured endzone to endzone—are a District of Columbia-owned Conservation Area covered with forests, meadows, and vernal pools, and with more than 2½ miles of shoreline. They are wonderful natural areas just a short bus ride for thousands of kids in dozens of elementary, middle, and high schools serving the eastern part of the District.
Living Classrooms has been the steward of these islands for 11 years. In addition to providing hands-on environmental education programming on the islands, Living Classrooms has been providing workforce development programs for youth and adults to help maintain and make improvements to the islands. Living Classrooms also employs a workforce development team known as the “Kingman Rangers.”
There are shelves of peer-reviewed studies about the benefits of kids playing and learning in nature, but most kids growing up in the eastern part of DC just don’t get to do it very often. Similarly, few schools can afford to get their students to a natural area to learn about environmental systems in fun and exciting ways. There is a stiff price to pay for that: science testing by the DC public schools shows that fewer than 3% of students in Ward 7 are meeting expectations in grade-level science. The percentage is even lower in Ward 8.
Kingman and Heritage Islands are simply an outstanding place to improve kids’ lives and a unique, nearby natural area to provide fun science and environmental education for thousands of DC school students and informal community groups, while also providing wonderful workforce development program opportunities to improve the islands.
Contributing to the Kingman and Heritage Islands Education and Community Fund is the way that you can be directly involved in helping DC kids learn about the environment. It takes real money to get kids out to the islands and give them fun and educational experiences. The fund also supports on-the-job workforce training that gives marketable skills while also improving the islands.
Every dollar that you contribute to the Kingman Education and Community Fund will go to support our education programs for kids and workforce development training on Kingman and Heritage Islands and in the community. With 35 years of experience in delivering outdoor, hands-on educational and job training experiences, we know how they change lives.
Please join us in helping the children of DC, Kingman and Heritage Islands, and ultimately the environment that we all share. For more information about the Kingman & Heritage Islands Education and Community Fund and our Living Classrooms education and job-training programs, visit www.livingclassrooms.org or call us at (202) 488-0627. We are very grateful for your support.