By now you’re likely familiar with The Bend Energy Challenge, our team in the Georgetown University Energy Prize – a national competition to reduce energy use. After a two-year competition period in 2015 and 2016, a $5 million prize will be awarded to the community that leads the way in reducing energy use.
Involving kids is essential to reducing Bend’s energy use and winning the Energy Prize competition. Not only is youth engagement one of the judging criteria, but youth can also be effective ambassadors for energy conservation and solar. If we want to win, and reduce Bend’s carbon footprint, we must educate, empower and inspire kids to “Take the Pledge!” at home and become champions of energy efficiency and solar within their families and peer groups. We need Bend’s youth to become energy heroes.
Check out this short video featuring a few kids we worked with this summer. See how much they’ve learned, and imagine the impact we could have if we engaged 1,500 kids and their families!
How will we do this?
The majority of Bend public school students will go back to school September 9-11, 2015. Therefore, there is a sense of urgency to raise funds now so that Bend Energy Challenge programming can be implemented as soon as kids are back in the classroom.
Over the next year, we will:
– Deliver a four-part energy education program to at least 1,000 6th graders in Bend schools. Through fun, interactive and hands-on learning experiences, students will learn about energy sources, how they can conserve energy at home and the benefits of going solar.
– Promote an inter-school competition among Bend high school students, using school assemblies and presentations, social media, prizes and existing inter-school rivalries to encourage youth involvement.
– Get 1,500 middle and high school students to “Take the Pledge!” and save energy at home.
In order to make the largest impact possible, we must start educating youth about energy conservation this fall. We believe that educating for sustainability is crucial. The choices and actions we make today will affect our future environment and the next generation. We can use the classroom as an avenue for teaching children why it is important to save energy, explaining the difference between renewable and nonrenewable energy sources, and demonstrating ways to cut back on energy use. Through this program, we can inspire and empower kids to become advocates for energy efficiency within their own families and peer groups.
The more kids we have on board and taking/sharing the pledge, the closer we get to winning the $5 million prize – and reducing Bend’s overall carbon footprint.
Help make our plans a reality.
It will take a lot of staff time and resources to get the job done: $12,000 worth. Will you help by making a donation today?
We are raising funds through an online campaign at ioby.org. IOBY – which stands for “In Our Back Yard” – is a crowdfunding platform for small, grassroots projects that make a difference in local communities. IOBY is a perfect fit for us, and a secure, easy way for you to learn about and support our youth energy hero campaign. .
Every donation, large or small, helps us meet our goal of $12,000! Make your gift today. Help us teach more kids, save more energy, and ultimately win $5 million for the benefit of our community.