Sunday, December 19, 2010

Nature At Its Best - The Children's Nature Institute

One night my husband and I sat up talking about our lives and what events or places had the biggest impacts on us.  As we talked we noticed a common thread through them all, Nature.  It's hard to beat.  Certainly playing an Xbox doesn't compare.  Watching the Idiot Box (as my father affectionately calls it) doesn't measure up.  There is nothing quite as wonderful as getting outside, feeling the breeze, soaking up the sun, taking in all the sights and sounds that nature has to offer.  My kids LOVE being outside - ALL kids love being outside.  This is why I was thrilled when my girlfriend Carol sent me a link the other day to The Children's Nature Institute.  Originally I was checking them out for their family nature walks (which I definitely plan on doing!) but I found out that they are so much more.  They open young minds to the living world by providing hands-on educational programs tailored specifically for the children of Los Angeles.  They've reached more than 15,000 kids a year and under served youth at over 100 inner-city schools and shelters.  That's AMAZING!  Imagine being a child and never catching a glimpse of an animal running around in the forest, or seeing the waves on the ocean, feeling the crisp mountain air on a hike....this is the unfortunate reality of most of The Children's Nature Institute's Outreach Discovery Program's students.  There are many ways we can get involved - become a Docent to lead an Outreach Nature Walk, make a donation, volunteer at their office, or attend one of their many festivals, garden planting, nature walks, or community events.   I plan on attending the Crecent Moon Stroll Sat, Jan 8th in Malibu to learn more.  I hope you'll join me!

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