Youth Corps Eco Leadership Program

Applications are open until September 15th, 2017 for the 2017-2018 Youth Corps Eco-Leadership Program!

Grades of Green’s Youth Corps Eco-Leadership Program mentors 60 selected 4th-12th grade Los Angeles area students to become eco-leaders by providing one-on-one guidance to select and implement a Grades of Green Activity protect the environment.

The Youth Corps is a free, year-long program where students participate in 5 Meet-Ups throughout the school year. At these Meet-Ups, students get to participate in a hands-on eco-field trip, and receive guidance and leadership training to actively care for the environment from passionate Grades of Green staff and a supportive peer network of fellow Youth Corps students. Students become inspired to help the environment and empowered when they see their actions spark change. Banning Styrofoam? Diverting tons of waste? Creating earth clubs? The awesome Grades of Green Youth Corps students are becoming environmental stewards all while making huge impacts in their communities!

A few past Youth Corps Activities include:

• Eighth-grader Sydney H. organized an e-waste collection drive at her school and collected over 9,000 pounds of e-waste to be recycled; • 6th graders Max and Izzy created a website & raised funds to plant 100 trees and educate their entire middle school about which trees are native to their community and why that’s important; • 5th grader Joshua C. created signage to “Turn off the Tap” for his school’s bathrooms and went from class to class to teach over 250 students about the importance of conserving water; • 12th grader Sam H. organized and collected over 17,000 pairs of used shoes to donate to people in need; • Sky W. helped his third grade classroom switch from paper newsletters to an electronic version and saved over 20,000 pieces of paper; and • 11th grader Annemarie D. set up recycling and compost stations which led to over 60,000 pounds of waste being diverted from a landfill.

Youth Corps students receive hands-on training to be the next generation's environmental leaders. From this experience, these students gain leadership and public speaking skills, teach about environmental issues, make new friends, take concrete action to better our environment, and have fun. Youth Corps students are championing real, positive environmental change all while inspiring their peers, educators, parents, and often entire communities to help protect the environment.
  • Applications are currently closed!
  • “Help Grades of Green With E...

    Grades of Green has a fun and innovative way for you to help the organization. Help support Grades of Green by purchasing Terry Tamminen’s latest book Watercolors: How JJ the Whale Saved Us.  For every purchase of Terry Tamminen’s book, $5.00 will be donated to our organization! Click here for details and be sure to choose Grades of Green from the drop down menu.
  • Water Challenge Eco St...

    Grades of Green is sending Eco Starter Kits to kick off our new Global Water Challenge program!
    The Water Challenge is a new global challenge that develops students' leadership and creativity skills. Grades of Green Teams across the country and the world are conducting their own research to learn about local water issues and coming up with solutions to conserve water in their community. The challenge culminates with each school submitting a video with their innovative solution. To help students get started, we have provided each Grades of Greens with an awesome Eco Starter Kit.
    Each starter kit contains:
    • - An introduction from your personal Water Challenge Advisor
    • - A Water Challenge banner
    • - A "Water Facts" diagram to use during your classroom presentations about water conservation
    • - Best practices for starting your own Grades of Green Team
    • - 1 Grades of Green shirt
    • - 3 Lanyards
    Each box is sturdy and reusable!
    By folding the top backwards and taping it down, you can easily repurpose each Eco Start Kit box into a submission box for your completed Water Challenge forms!
    We hope that you enjoy your kits and have a great start to the Challenge!
  • $500 BCBG Gift Certificate Win...

    And the winner is…………….. Nancy Corshen! Congratulations to Nancy who is the big winner of the Grades of Green BCBG $500 gift card drawing.  The drawing was held on Tuesday at our Board of Directors meeting. Board member Ranae DeSantis, the donor who provided the matching funds, picked the name out of the box. Once again we would like to thank each and every one of you for generously supporting Grades of Green. Your contribution will ensure that we can continue to roll Grades of Green out to schools across the country in order to inspire and empower students to care for the environment. The fundraising drive was a huge success. By September 15th, we had raised $12,602.19 in matching funds which exceeded our $10,000 goal and the DeSantis Family Foundation surprised us by matching that entire amount. In addition, we received three $5,000 sponsorships for a whopping grand total of $40,201.38 raised! We had over 100 donors including an 88 year old woman who heard about our cause and brought a twenty dollar bill over to a friend’s house to help out. We are honored by your generosity especially in these hard economic times. We encourage you to check our website from time to time to see how we are doing and if you ever have any feedback, we would love to hear from you. Also, please add us as a friend on Facebook – we have a lot of fun posts going out you don’t want to miss.

    This is what 16,000 pounds of e-waste stacked high on fifteen pallets looks like! On Saturday, April 26th, Youth Corps member Sydney H. hosted her second annual electronic waste collection drive outside of her middle school. Sydney partnered with All Green Electronics and Waste Management to host this event which included free curbside e-waste recycling and paper shredding. Sydney also advertised the e-waste opportunity to local businesses, and was able to help KAA, South Bay Brokers, and Diane Dempsey dispose of their old electronics in an eco-friendly way. The e-waste collected filled two All Green Electonics trucks to the brim, resulting in a very successful event! Sydney plans to use the funds collected to help grow her school’s environmental programs. Way to go Sydney on implementing your green project and inspiring and empowering your community to do something to care for the environment.
  • 17,000 Shoes Collected, 8,000 ...

    Did you know over 300 million children in the world can’t afford shoes, yet millions of shoes are dumped into landfills each year? Sam H., a Grades of Green Youth Corps Eco-Leadership student, wanted to do something about this problem. Since 2011 when he first joined the Youth Corps, Sam has worked Grades of Green and Soles 4 Souls to collect used shoes and donate them to those in need. His goal is to collect 25,000 pairs of shoes before he starts college this fall and if he succeeds, he will earn a trip to Africa to visit those who benefited from his shoe collection. After six years of hard work, Sam managed to collect 17,000 pairs of shoes – and he only needs 8,000 more to reach his goal!

    This summer Sam is partnering with Grades of Green and the Manhattan Beach Farmers Market for one final push to complete his goal, but we need your help! Please bring any unwanted used shoes to the designated collection bins located at the Manhattan Beach Farmers Market on Tuesdays from 11am – 5pm. These bins will be available all summer long, and all shoes will go to supporting Sam’s goal. Want to learn more about Sam's shoe collection and play some fun and educational activities during your next visit to the Manhattan Beach Farmers Market? Be sure to visit the Grades of Green booth during the Manhattan Beach Farmers Market Anniversary on July 11th - we hope to see you there with your used shoes!

    Want to take an an eco-activity like Sam? Click here to learn more about Grades of Green's Youth Corps Eco-Leadership Program!