Grant Opportunity for Local Public Educators in Valencia County: Now OPEN! 

Application for Nature Based Outdoor Edu[...]
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Are you a local public school teacher in Valencia County who is looking to bring back the importance of the outdoors into your daily curriculum with your students? Apply now for funding to support your classroom!


Funding Provided by: Central Audubon Society and Friends of Whitfield

Opportunity provided by: Valencia Soil and Water Conservation District


  • Total funding available: $8,752.
  • Total funding that an individual educator at a local public school in Valencia County can apply for: $400. (before tax) changed to $500.00
  • Total funding a local public school (multiple educators/staff/administrators) can apply for: $800. (before tax) changed to $1,000.00


Application due date: Apply early! First come first serve! Closes in mid November

Objective: The purpose of the funding is to help support nature-based activities for indoor and outdoor classroom curriculum to support environmental education. Access to the outdoors should be a human right, but sometimes there are inequities that leave many students lacking the needed resources to experience and learn from the environment. In order to bridge the gap between outdoor and in classroom learning, it is important for all students to have access to equitable resources that will enhance their learning experiences outdoors with an ultimate goal of creating future stewards of the environment who understand how to be environmentally aware in every aspect of their lives.

Who can apply? Any classroom teacher from a local public school within Valencia County can apply. We encourage local public schools representing a high percentage of low-income families to apply. We encourage more than one teacher/staff member per local public school to apply for increased awareness and funding. (up to two applications per school).

What types of resources will be funded?

  • Nature Based Resources available for an individual classroom, grade level classes or multiple grade levels at a local public school.
  • Nature Based Resources available for students (to keep at home or return to school after use)

What kinds of resources will this funding support? This funding will support outdoor resources that students can use to enhance outdoor educational experiences in their local environment.  

Examples of nature-based resources include: nature journals, magnifying glasses, binoculars, water testing kits, microscopes, guides to wildlife, plants, and animals, seed starting kits, temperature and wind gauges, and rain gauges. (list and price options are available at the end of this application) Any resources that clearly relate to outdoor learning are accepted!

Please list the resources you will need to support your lesson, quantity, link to source of funding (or indicate you will be using one of the examples on this application), and a price total in your budget.

How will applicants be chosen? Applications will be evaluated on a first come first serve basis (until funding runs out). Applicant winners will be notified by email as soon as all applications are reviewed and consideration is complete.

If awarded the funding, what are the important next steps I can expect and what do I do for reporting? If your class/es are awarded, you will be notified within a few weeks of the closing date of the application: 11/1/2020. Once notified, we will confirm the resource request, purchase your needed items, and schedule a pick-up date for you to collect your items at Whitfield Wildlife Conservation Area, 24 24 HWY 47, Belen, NM 87002. These resources will be yours to keep with you or with your students.

It is critical we know how you incorporated these resources for your class/es this school year. We will be reaching out at the end of the school year in 2021 for photos, videos, lessons and other examples of students engaging in outdoor learning experiences throughout the school year and how these resources helped achieve those goals. Your commitment to environmental education will help create the needed change across the state for others to engage in the importance of outdoor education and how students can incorporate the environment in their every-day lives.

Important to consider: When thinking about resources to enhance outdoor learning, consider items that most students may not have available and that can function for many different subjects, projects and objectives and can be used multiple times and in multiple ways.

What other nature-based opportunity is connected with this funding opportunity? Valencia Soil and Water Conservation District’s Whitfield Education Programs is partnering with the Sevilleta National Wildlife Refuge and will be providing nature-based lessons and activities for individual grade levels directly aligned with Next Generation Science Standards and designed to get kids outside to help understand the local ecosystem. These lessons will be available on YouTube upon request. To sign up for this opportunity as a connected lesson to help strengthen environmental education opportunities for local students for school year 2020/2021, please email Education Program Manager, Allison Martin at to receive a registration form. Make sure to include all grade levels that want to participate.

How do I return the application? Please fill out the application questions below and return by emailing Make sure you fill out all of the questions for your application to be considered. Since this is a first come first serve opportunity, the first complete and accurate applications will be considered.

Questions? Please contact Education Program Manager, Allison Martin at








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Belen, NM 87002


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2424 Hwy 47
Belen, NM  87002


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