Kindness in words creates confidence. Kindness in thinking creates profoundness. Kindness in giving creates love. ~Lao-Tzu
When a parent becomes a grandparent, they are the Guardians of two generations in their family ~Foundation for Grandparenting
The lack of emotional security of our American young people is due, I believe, to their isolation from the larger family unit. No two people – no mere father and mother – as I have often said, are enough to provide emotional security for a child. He needs to feel himself one in a world of kinfolk, persons of variety in age and temperament, and yet allied to himself by an indissoluble bond which he cannot break if he could, for nature has welded him into it before he was born. ~Pearl S. Buck
Lots of people want to ride with you in the limo, but what you want is someone who will take the bus with you when the limo breaks down. ~Oprah Winfrey
Dare to reach out your hand into the darkness, to pull another hand into the light. ~Norman B. Rice
Service to others is the rent you pay for your room here on earth. ~Mohammed Ali
Take action It’s easy to make a buck. It’s a lot tougher to make a difference. ~Tom Brokaw
Each time someone stands up for an ideal, or acts to improve the lot of others, or strikes out against injustice, they sends forth a tiny ripple of hope… and crossing each other from a million different centers of energy and daring those ripples build a current that can sweep down the mightiest walls of oppression and resistance. ~Robert F. Kennedy
***If you ever start feeling like you have the goofiest, craziest, most dysfunctional family in the world, all you have to do is go to a state fair. Because five minutes at the fair, you’ll be going, ‘you know, we’re alright. We are dang near royalty.’ ~Jeff Foxworthy
***Do what you can, with what you have, where you are. ~Theodore Roosevelt
***When you get in a tight place and everything goes against you, till it seems as though you could not hold on a minute longer, never give up then, for that is just the place and time that the tide will turn. ~Harriott Beecher Stowe
***Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around. ~Leo Buscaglia
***We’re here for a reason. I believe a bit of the reason is to throw little torches out to lead people through the dark. ~Whoopi Goldberg
If a free society cannot help the many who are poor, it cannot save the few who are rich. ~John F. Kennedy
Don’t find fault. Find a remedy. ~Henry Ford
***When you want to teach children to think, you begin by treating them seriously when they are little, giving them responsibilities, talking to them candidly, providing privacy and solitude for them, and making them readers and thinkers of significant thoughts from the beginning. That’s if you want to teach them to think. ~Bertrand Russell
You don’t develop courage by being happy in your relationships everyday. You develop it by surviving difficult times and challenging adversity. ~Barbara de Angelis
***“Some days are diamonds, some days are stone. Some time the hard times won’t leave me alone. Some times the cold winds blow a chill in my bones. Some days are diamonds, some days are stone.” ~recorded by John Denver. Words and music by Dick Feller
by Bellezza Squillace, GATE Executive Director 07.14.2008
We all get stressed, these days even more. Ever present electrical currents from TV, computer, cell phones, ambient wifi and other sources adds to anxiety. Enjoying time in Nature helps. But sometimes we need to destress right now! Deep breathing helps us refocus and reconnect to what is important in this moment. Here are a few techniques.
Place one hand on abdomen below belly button. Inhale slowly and deeply, feel diaphragm expand lifting your belly hand. Hold full lungs for a few seconds before exhaling. Exhale while feeling your belly hand descend.
Do the above while having other hand on chest. Feel your heart rate and notice any changes as you breathe. Concentrate on having your breath fill your lungs and abdomen. Slowly exhale while concentrating on the flow of air in and out. Concentrate on the conversion of oxygen on the cellular level and its flow through your body.
The USDA Forest Service is charged with caring for 193 million acres of the nation’s forests and grasslands and solving some of the most complex land management challenges. Across the country, forests densely packed with trees are at high risk of catastrophic wildfire as well as insect and disease outbreaks that could impact ecosystem health for generations to come.
There is also a backlog of aging infrastructure, trails and facilities in need of repair, collectively called deferred maintenance, that continues to increase across national forests and grasslands.
Contending with these challenges will require upwards of $65 billion to restore forest health and $5 billion to address deferred maintenance nationwide. Over the last 10 years however, wildfire suppression costs have grown dramatically, sapping funds from the escalating backlogs of work to improve forest health and tackle deferred maintenance, compounding the problem over time.
The National Partnership Office Conservation Finance Program leads the agency’s work to build public-private partnerships to take on these and other land management challenges. This year the National Partnership Office launched the Innovative Finance for National Forests Grant Program with the goal of accelerating work with partners to pioneer partnership models that leverage new sources of funding and financing to support work on the ground.
“The program was really born out of necessity,” said Nathalie Woolworth, conservation finance program manager at the Forest Service. “This new grant program is exploring innovative finance solutions to leverage new sources of funding while also building relationships with partners.”
The Innovative Finance for National Forests Grant Program is a public-private collaboration with the National Forest Foundation and U.S. Endowment for Forestry and Communities. So far, the program has awarded $1.8 million to 10 grantees to create new finance models that leveraging private capital in addressing some of the biggest land management challenges.
The program’s main purpose is to promote creativity in partnership models that tap into new sources of funding and financing.
“Private capital is a sector of largely untapped opportunity for conservation,” said Woolworth. “Private investors are increasingly interested in putting their capital towards projects that yield social and environmental as well as financial returns.”
The grant program helps finance projects that restore forests and reduce wildfire by thinning thick, unhealthy stands of trees. Similarly, the grants have funded construction of facilities that can use the trees removed in restoration operations as biomass energy. The grants also fund cost sharing partnership models for campgrounds, among other programs with environmental, recreation and infrastructure benefits.
The Forest Service and its funding partners selected grantees with projects that can be scaled up and replicated with the end goal to support models with potential to address the agency’s land management challenges at scale.
The outcome of the grant program isn’t just to expand the organization’s toolbox of innovative and effective financial models but also to expand the agency’s network of partners.
“We couldn’t do our work without our partners,” said Woolworth. “In the future, these grantees and their innovative ideas may also become long-term partners, assisting us with the important work of stewarding our national forests.”
As 2020 comes to a close, we are able to reflect on its benefits and challenges. While GATE was challenged cancelling in-person early childhood educator seminars, the youth education community as a whole benefitted as more organizations offered online educator training. Teachers of the very young can now search online for #ECE Webinars and find numerous training experiences. Many free of charge and some have STEM as a focus like the five below links. #OpenYourGATE #earlySTEM #earlyed #earlychildhood #earlychildhoodeducation
Top 5 Early Childhood Education Webinar Sites
Early Childhood Investigations – Why go to a conference when sites like this are now available. High quality early childhood education at your fingertips. Sessions have detailed description of topic and presenter(s). Plus each session is sponsored so cost is, well, zip. Make sure to support those sponsors who support ECE educators. https://www.earlychildhoodwebinars.com/
EdWeb offers CE certificates in childhood education through both live links and recorded sessions. They provide a wide array of webinar topics. You can search for age or domain specific training like literacy, socio-emotional or elementary. The link below lists more educational options for teachers that jumped online during 2020. https://home.edweb.net/top25edwebinars-2020/
Hatch is a tech business, supplying early learning technologies for classrooms and other learning centers. Webinar and blog post options available for home and work educators. Plus, training opportunities for center employee groups. Check out their website for info. https://www.hatchearlylearning.com/resources/webinars
CHALLENGES MET – GATE’s Learning & Edu-Care Project was further challenged by stay-at-home mandates limiting wilderness outings and youth explorations. As a result, local environmental education efforts were introduced online with mixed reviews. Mobile STEM Lab outreach to children under 10 continued with activities and supplies delivered to homes within Kern County. One child’s story will be posted soon on our Success Stories page. Check back for it.
LOOKING FORWARD – GATE again joins in Give Big Kern, coordinating it with our annual Earth Day Fundraiser. Send us a message to join as a fundraiser in your community. Visit our donation page to help now. Also, we begin our biggest ever push for volunteer involvement with both in-person and online opportunities. Plus, GATE volunteers will actualize our online publicity campaign with video stories, social media outreach and more. #GiveBigKern #EarthDay #DoGood #Volunteer #OpenYourGATE
Remember – help us help others. Join our efforts in any way you can. Thank you.