Partners Come From All Walks of Life

students and volunteers
Students record observations and learn about rain barrel irrigation. Christine Collins, owner of Wildrose Lawncare, and Lou Kavouras (far right), District deputy executive director, work together on the Curb Appeal Project.

In November, the District recognized the very best in District-sponsored community and youth water resources education projects at the Partners in Watershed Education ceremony. The celebration was held at the Lake Mirror Complex in Lakeland.

Twenty-seven educational projects were recognized at the ceremony. Projects completed by teachers and their students, community members, local governments, nonprofit groups and District-sponsored programs that use volunteers to educate others about water resources were among the awardees. Projects from throughout the 16 counties that make up the District were considered.

Christine Collins, owner of Wildrose Lawncare, was recognized for her participation in two projects.

“Our business philosophy is to promote professionalism and environmental responsibility in the green industry,” said Collins. “We view our partnership in watershed education as a bridge between government and private enterprise for the benefit of our community.”

Wildrose Lawncare assisted with the Florida-friendly design and installation of the District’s Curb Appeal landscape makeover project. Collins also coordinated the Florida Yard Fandango, an event held at the Museum of Science and Industry promoting Florida-friendly landscaping.

Lisa Albrecht, a second-grade teacher at Lutz Elementary School, has applied for and received several education grants from the District during her years of teaching.

Two years ago, Albrecht used a grant to design three butterfly gardens using water-conserving plants. With the help of this year’s grant, more students and grade levels were able to be involved with the project. The students learned about native plants, wetlands and how to create an irrigation system using rain barrels. Each grade level maintained its own garden and recorded observations in student science journals.

“I know all my past and present students, as well as their parents, are proud of their hard work,” said Albrecht. “Imagine what a beautiful world we would live in if every child became involved with their environment early and learned how to respect and take care of it.”

list of awardees