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2016: Our Year In Review

Conservation Program - Conserving Natural Resources

  • Jill Erickson promoted to Program Director – Congratulations Jill!

  • Hired new Project Manager - Welcome Caitlin Dix!

  • Awarded $90,000 Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) contract with Bridging the Gap to implement Upper Blue River Conservation Opportunity Area Action Plan

  • Leading Urban Monarch Conservation Framework for Kansas City, tool under development by The Field Museum and US Fish and Wildlife Service to help guide urban Monarch conservation plans in cities across the Midwest

  • As part of Monarch LCD project hired two summer technicians

  • Summer technicians surveyed dozens of sites across the metropolitan area

  • Also hosted two Green Works interns

  • Developed Restoration Plan for Boys Grow at Municipal Farm with MDC and Kansas City, MO

  • Created Blue River Area Action Plan and Map with Urban Waters Federal Partnership and MDC

  • 70+ hours of stewardship by Green Guard and Rockhurst students restoring 13 acres of woods at East High School in Kansas City, MO

  • Coordinated litter pick up along Brush Creek with 20 Rockhurst University students on MLK Day of Service

  • Completed two-year analysis of vacant lots in Middle Blue Basin and identified and mapped more than 100 parcels that are high-priority for conservation

  • Hosted University of Missouri-Kansas City Interns to complete vacant lots mapping and analysis, community engagement

  • Sub-awarded Kansas City Wildlands to lead Honeysuckle Academy training for Boys Grow and lead a workday to remove invasive species at the Municipal Farm

  • Created bike trail plan for East High School with Urban Trail Co., to be implemented in future

Education and Outreach Program - Connecting People to Nature

  • Hired AmeriCorps VISTA Summer Associate to assist Partnership Coordinator and launch Youth Council

  • Awarded $20,000 from Community Capital Fund to expand Green Guard program to two new sites

  • Awarded $10,000 Tree Resource Improvement and Maintenance grant from MDC to perform tree inventory at East High School, Kansas City, Mo.

  • Hosted 2016 MLK Nature Walk for 20+ participants, Partners KCMO Parks & Rec, Blue River Watershed Assoc., Green Works in Kansas City, Hy-Vee, Environmental Professionals of Color, MDC

  • VISTA provided 20+ education and outreach presentations at churches, schools, businesses; engaged 400

  • Launched the Green Guard urban stewardship program at East High School in Kansas City, MO

  • Sub-awarded BRWA to host one TRUE Blue training for Boys Grow students

  • Partnered with Black & Veatch to install Blue River educational signage across the bridge to Africa over the Blue River at the KC Zoo

  • Facebook page - 360 followers (up from 300 in 2015)

  • Hosted three community workshops with 50 attendees and tours educating community members and leaders about the importance of monarch butterflies and new tools to create habitat

  • Led five community workshop in three neighborhoods with more than 125 participating to discuss vacant lots, identify potential green infrastructure reuse, plan next steps for reuse, and provide watershed education and native plant education

  • Hosted a networking and information exchange and tour for Marlborough Community Coalition, The Conservation Fund, and KCMO Water Services to visit green infrastructure in Omaha, NE

  • Hired new Community Engagement Facilitator for Parks with Purpose – Welcome Ed Linnebur!

Alliance Services Program - Convening Our Community

  • Hired new Partnership Coordinator – Welcome Joy Heaviland!

  • 35 Partners renewed Alliance membership

  • Convened Alliance partners for 30+ meetings

  • Co-lead Unified Messaging campaign, Renew the Blue, a 5-year communication plan to brand the Blue River as a community asset

  • EPA Urban Waters awarded a $165,000 grant to MARC and HCA to serve as Ambassador for Urban Waters Federal Partnership, a program working to identify and share resources among governmental agencies and departments, not-for-profit conservation groups, and local partners

  • Serving on Core Group for Kansas City Native Plant Initiative

  • Serving on Core Group for Fish & Wildlife Service Ecological Places in Cities (EPIC), regional landscape scale conservation for urban areas

  • Serving on Steering Committee of the Let’s Move Outside initiative

  • Serving as Co-Chair on Urban Neighborhood Initiative, Vacant to Vibrant Action Group, which is helping to prioritize revitalization of vacant urban lots

  • Leading Kansas City Parks with Purpose Core Team to develop plans for open space in Marlborough in partnership with The Conservation Fund, which awarded HCA a $250,000 grant for the project

  • Attended 35+ community meetings (Troost Alliance, Heartland Community Connection, neighborhood associations, Blue River Quarterly, Water Quality Education Committee, and more)

  • Supported and participated in 15+ partner events (Project Blue River Rescue, Monarch Mania, Blue at the Zoo, Big Blue Bus Tour, Let’s Move Outside Summit, and others)

  • Hosted Second Annual Partnership Summit, theme was Inspiring the Next Generation of Urban Conservationists. Boys Grow was keynote speaker, with more than 50 attending (and 100 more stuck in Royals parade traffic!)

Together, protecting the places we love

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