GM GREEN Program Plays Key Role in GM Sustainability

General Motors released its Sustainability Report for 2014 this May, and it gave a nod to our GM GREEN (Global Rivers Environmental Education Network) program for helping the Fortune 100 company meet its lofty sustainability goals.

GM’s commitment to community is evident by their 25+ year investment in GM GREEN, captured in this highlight from the report.

Hands-On Instruction. Reaching its 25th year in 2014, GM Global Rivers Environmental Education Network (GREEN) is the longest running conservation education program by any automaker, having impacted 150,000 young people through hands-on learning since its inception in 1989. GM helps youth better understand their impact on local watersheds by matching approximately 10,000 students each year with GM mentors at 53 sites — including every manufacturing site in the U.S. and Canada — to develop a community project to address a water issue of concern. The program is considered an excellent model for how the public and private sectors can come together to make a meaningful impact on the environment and communities.”

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GM GREEN’s community impact is vast. Last year alone, we worked with 14,366 young people in 135 schools in 42 communities through the support of 286 educators, 212 GM mentors from 53 facilities, and 29 community partners.

We also see real results through the program that speak to GM’s sustainability goals around improving the communities they live and work in, as well as creating positive employee engagement.

  • 80% of educators report that GM GREEN increases their students’ interest in science
  • 79% of educators report that participating in GM GREEN increases their satisfaction with teaching and working with youth
  • 77% of GM employees indicate the experience was personally fulfilling

As one partner said, “How do you spark interest in students and volunteers that lasts and makes them want to learn more, do more, help more, and become more engaged as citizens? Put simply, Earth Force.”

We are incredibly proud of our partnership with General Motors and of the extraordinary impact we create through the support of partners, educators, and young people across North America. We look forward to continuing to push boundaries and elevating young people as community leaders and environmental citizens today.

 

Earth Force Develops Resiliency Skills

Climate resiliency is at the forefront of many people’s minds as we and our environment experience the effects of climate change. At Earth Force, we believe that resiliency is developed at a young age, by getting students engaged and invested in the environment and in their communities.

Students participating in Earth Force develop deeper civic skills, an increased ability to work as a team to solve environmental problems, and a better understanding of how to use classroom skills in the real world. Below shows how the Earth Force Process supports the qualities of resilience, backed by 20 years of independent evaluation.

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One Month In: A Letter From Our New CEO

Vince Meldrum

To Earth Force Students, Partners, Educators, and Supporters:

I wanted to take the opportunity to introduce myself and share with you how excited I am to be here at Earth Force. As you may know, I have worked with Earth Force on and off since 1999. And so, I have had the opportunity to see the organization go through many changes. The organization that I joined over 15 years ago has little in common with the one that we are today. Our growth over the years has created an organization that I am incredibly proud to be a part of.

Only Earth Force combines rigorous science content with civics to build the skills that youth, and their communities, need as they face rapidly changing ecosystems. More than 300,000 young people have participated in Earth Force since the organization was created in 1994. I have gotten to know many of these young people, like John Vogel, who I met when he was an excited teenager protecting watersheds in his Florida community and is now an environmental engineer and a member of our board of directors.

Young people participating in our programs learn how to use scientific equipment to pinpoint problems in their community, develop plans to address those issues, and lead community problem-solving efforts across the country.

Today our communities face the challenges brought about by a rapidly changing climate. Earth Force is committed to being a part of the growing movement to create and support resilient and adaptable communities. We believe that the solution starts with our young people becoming engaged and active around the environment. In the coming months you will hear more about our efforts to address this crisis.

Thank you all for everything you have done to support Earth Force. Your work is what makes all of this possible.

I am looking forward to working with each and every one of you.

All the best,

Vince Meldrum