NACD CELEBRATES 63RD ANNUAL STEWARDSHIP WEEK
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, the National Association of Conservation Districts (NACD) celebrated the organization’s 63rd Annual Stewardship Week at the United States Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) People’s Garden.
USDA Secretary Sonny Perdue commemorated the opening day of the department’s farmers market and toured booths set up by local farmers, ranchers and small businesses. NACD set up a tent at the farmers market to educate people of all ages about Stewardship Week. The 2018 Stewardship Week theme is Watersheds: Our Water, Our Home, and attendees stopped by NACD’s tent to test their knowledge of watersheds and take a photo with the Natural Resources Conservation Service’s (NRCS) mascot Sammy Soil. Individuals also had the opportunity to explore a hands-on watershed education model set up by Ashley Palmer of Northern Virginia Soil and Water Conservation District.
“This year’s theme highlights the significant role watersheds have within the environment,” NACD CEO Jeremy Peters said. “This afternoon, we had the opportunity to visit with folks and educate them about what a watershed is and why they’re important. Access to clean water affects everyone, and it’s our responsibility to work together to protect and preserve the health of our watersheds.”
NACD established Stewardship Week more than 60 years ago to educate the public on the importance of soil health, water quality, pollinator habitat and other conservation topics. This week, conservation districts and state associations across the country celebrated Stewardship Week by visiting local schools and distributing educational materials, hosting community events, and planting trees.
“Stewardship Week represents one of the most important initiatives we have at NACD,” NACD Stewardship and Education Committee Chairman Bevin Law said. “Educating the next generation on the value of conserving our natural resources is crucial to sustainability for the future. America’s conservation districts are constantly finding new and innovative ways to engage with their communities about various aspects of conservation, and I applaud them for their participation and support of the various stewardship events and celebrations that took place this week.”
Stewardship Week celebrations have taken place across the globe throughout the last several weeks. In Guam, acting governor Ray Tenorio and Southern Guam Soil and Water Conservation District chair Benny Chargualaf planted an ifit tree at the governor’s complex, and Tenorio signed a proclamation to declare this week as Guam’s Soil and Water Stewardship Week. In Little Rock, the Arkansas Association of Conservation Districts and the Arkansas Conservation Partnership attended Governor Asa Hutchinson’s Arkansas Stewardship Week proclamation signing. In Montrose, Colo., Shavano Conservation District (SCD) provided 44 non-source pollution presentations to eight Colorado elementary schools and will host in a Natural Resource Festival for 600fourth-graders next week. And last month, Pedernales Soil and Water Conservation District in Texas hosted their 34th annual Soil Stewardship Breakfast on Whittington’s Mountain, and Blanco County Judge Brett Bray signed a proclamation announcing Stewardship Week.
For more information on Stewardship Week and how your organization or conservation district can join festivities in the future, please visit www.nacdnet.org. To view photos from NACD’s 2018 Stewardship Week activities, please visit our Flickr page.
About the National Association of Conservation Districts:
The National Association of Conservation Districts is the non-profit organization that represents the nation’s 3,000 conservation districts, their state and territory associations, and the 17,000 men and women who serve on their governing boards. For more than 70 years, local conservation districts have worked with cooperating landowners and managers of private working lands to help them plan and apply effective conservation practices. For more information about NACD, visit: www.nacdnet.org.