A few years ago, some students in the West Genesee High School ECOS club decided that they wanted to transform a school courtyard into an outdoor learning space. ECOS stands for Environmentally Conscious Organization of Students, but most students just call it the Environmental Club. The club’s mission is to raise awareness of environmental issues while enjoying the outdoors.
The club thought that the courtyard was wasted space that wasn’t being used to its fullest, so they started making a plan. The plan includes seating areas, vegetable gardens, birdhouses, reading areas, native pollinator gardens, bird feeders, and some artistic elements. ECOS will use the area for their meetings, but the hope is that it will be used by many students and community members.
This is an idea that is finally past the planning stage and ready to begin. It is intended to be a place to gather and just hang out, but will have a great educational aspect to it as well. It is already becoming a project that the whole school is getting involved in. The technology department constructed two benches that will be used and the Art Honor Society will be contributing some of their skills to the project also.
Currently, plans are being drawn up by Appel Osborne Landscape Architect firm to include many of the ideas the students have come up with. To raise money for the project, the club has received a grant from SRC, a grant from Gardening Know How, and done some fundraising.
ECOS still needs your help. If anyone would like to help with donations of materials and or money, it would be greatly appreciated. This is a long term project that will be used by many members of the District and community. Please email ECOS advisor, Chris Paoli, at firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to help.