The report by Tammy Wells in the Nov. 3, 2018 Journal Tribune edition about the development of the David and Linda Pence Community Ecology Center at the Mousam Way Land Trust’s McKeon Reserve is a very timely piece in these times of increased environmental awareness. I am very happy to be involved with this project, and the assistance realized thus far from local folks and businesses is heartwarming and encouraging. This new Center, carrying the name of a major donor, will benefit many civic organizations in the local communities through educational events and projects.
This has already begun with the Trust’s hosting of some local schools’ earth science projects and scouting activities, and how those activities relate to not only the surrounding natural environment, but to some of the stuff that the kids do every day. Grade school kids with their teachers, and local business volunteers have planted pollinator plants in a meadow restoration project, learning how the insect pollinators help us humans grow food while enjoying the beauty of the butterflies, moths, and bees…and the birds that eat them; high school students have studied various native bird species and their nesting requirements, and have built and installed nesting boxes, learning the importance of the insect pest control that the birds provide ; the Master Gardener Program of the University of Maine Cooperative Extension in York County will be overseeing a Community Garden this summer at the Center; local businesses have assisted by supplying materials, pounding nails, and clearing trails in the initial building of this community center, and while doing so, have been exposed to the importance of being aware that Nature doesn’t live around us – we live within Mother Nature.
But she’s getting angry. Earth is getting hot and stormy, clean air and water laws are under assault, and rain forests are being decimated. Advocacies are needing nurturing. Education is the golden key to our continued health – indeed our very survival. The Center hopes to involve the new high school/tech center…SHS/SRTC…with environmental educational studies and expeditionary learning projects, while increasing civic organizational and grade-school activities.
Maintaining Earth’s health is the only way that we as a species will maintain our own health. The David and Linda Pence Community Ecology Center will strive to do its part towards that awareness by its environmental advocacy, increasing its hosting of outdoor-based educational projects, and encouraging environmental exposure events.