FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 27, 2016, Oakland, CA: Rose Foundation for Communities and the Environment today announced WildPlaces as the winner of the 2016 Anthony Grassroots Prize, an annual $1,000 Earth Month award recognizing an outstanding example of grassroots environmental stewardship.
Porterville-based WildPlaces serves disadvantaged communities at the intersection of California’s great Central Valley and majestic Southern Sierra. Although the landscape is vast and beautiful, WildPlaces constituents suffer from poverty, high unemployment, disproportionate incarceration, high school drop-out, gangs, drugs, poor water quality, high teen pregnancy, fear of deportation and prejudice, and inadequate access to governmental and health services. But WildPlaces’ small, diverse team of staff and volunteers draws from their own deep spiritual connections to our land, water, and air to help many thousands of students and community members go home at night with a single shared thought – they have taken a meaningful action to protect Nature and the world is a better place for their actions.
WildPlaces was founded 15 years ago by Mehmet McMillan, who drew from his background as an urban forester with Los Angeles nonprofit TreePeople, civil disobedience and campaign experience with Greenpeace and Amazon Watch, and international human dignity work with the Burma Humanitarian Mission. WildPlaces’ fundamental concept revolves around reconnecting the human sprit to Nature. Whether it’s helping remove tens of thousands of pounds of trash from the Tule River through Rio Limpio or a multi-day meadow restoration project in the Wilderness, the disadvantaged youth who participate in WildPlaces’ programs gain a deep understanding of both the value that Nature provides to sustain all of us and the value that we – in turn – must provide back to sustain Nature.
“WildPlaces is involving our next generation in restoring and preserving the special beauty of the Southern Sierra,” said Anthony Prize founder Juliette Anthony. “They provide young people with hands-on experiences to protect Nature now, and they are broadening and strengthening the environmental movement so we can all benefit from Nature tomorrow.”
To learn more about WildPlaces, please visit http://www.wildplaces.net/
ATTENTION: Photographs featuring WildPlaces can be found at: rosefdn.org/2016prize
About the Anthony Grassroots Prize
The Anthony Grassroots Prize was endowed by Juliette Anthony, a lifelong environmental activist who has received wide recognition for her work in protecting the Santa Monica Mountains, banning the toxic gasoline additive MTBE, promoting solar power, and publicizing the negative environmental impacts of ethanol. To learn more about the Anthony Grassroots Prize, please visit http://rosefdn.org/anthony-grassroots-prize
About Rose Foundation for Communities and the Environment
Rose Foundation for Communities and the Environment supports community-based advocacy to protect the environment and public health through grantmaking and direct service programs. Rose Foundation’s focus includes grassroots activism, watershed protection, environmental justice, and consumer rights. Rose also administers New Voices Are Rising, a youth leadership development and environmental justice advocacy training program. To learn more about Rose Foundation, please visit http://rosefdn.org/
Tim Little, Rose Foundation, email@example.com, 510-658-0702
Mehmet McMillan, WildPlaces, Mehmet@wildplaces.net, 760-447-1702
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