West Virginia offers programs for our state’s children to enrich their understanding of the environment through summer fun and learning how to interact responsibly with our natural resources. Randolph County Solid Waste Authority is proud to sponsor $525 in tuition assistance for educating youth in conservation and environmental stewardship. Programs include Junior Conservation Camp and the State Conservation Camp.

Junior Conservation Camp is sponsored by the WV Department of Environmental Resources (DEP), and open at any child between the ages of 11 and 14. It offers classes in forestry, wildlife, archery, hydrology, recycling, hunter safety, fishing and other conservation education areas. There are also sporting activities such as basketball, kickball, and volleyball. It takes place this year at Cedar Lakes in Ripley (Jackson County). Cost is $175 per camper, and takes place June 17-21. Interested parties may contact Annette Hoskins at Annette.L.Hoskins@wv.gov for further information.

For students ages 14-17, State Conservation Camp takes place in Webster County at Camp Caeser June 10-15. Featuring a block schedule format in the mornings, afternoons will be spent immersed in hands-on outdoor learning activities like archery, boating and marksmanship. Cost is $200 per camper. For information, contact Alan Miller at 304-358-3298 or Dr. Ben Spong at 304-293-9425 or ben.spong@mail.wvu.edu.

Scholarships are usually available for both programs to families in need. There are a variety of fun filled conservation programs and nature camps for families and children taking place around our beautiful state this summer. Take this opportunity to get outdoors, enjoy our environment and learn how to better care for it!