High Plains Environmental Center

HPEC is raising $3000 for the design, production & installation of creative educational children's interpretive signage for our visitor's center and surrounding gardens & natural areas. The children's signage goal is part of our overall goal to improve our visitors experience for all ages.

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Community Garden

Class

Animal-Related 

Beneficiaries

General population

Description

HPEC's Community Garden provides an opportunity for the local community & Friends of HPEC to practice horticultural or small-scale agricultural skills. This can be a great way to start a small satellite garden if you are interested in experimenting with new skills or crops, or if your home does not allow you to alter the landscape.
- Workshops on pest management, crop propagation, and sustainable garden practices (composting, for example)
- Community Garden Potlucks/Produce Swap 1x per month to share our skills, experiences, and harvest.
- Access to HPEC's organics/food waste disposal, worm castings/compost give-away program, & free Red Wiggler Worms to start your own worm compost.

Photos

Evidence of Program's Success

Native Plant Nursery

Class

Environment 

Beneficiaries

Animals
General population

Description

Native plants (wildflowers), birds, butterflies, and other pollinators are intrinsically connected; one cannot survive and form a whole ecosystem without the others. For this reason, HPEC is committed to native plant conservation. With over 20 million acres of suburban lawns in the U.S., development has greatly diminished the community of native plants and subsequently the birds and butterflies that depend on them. The good news is that many Colorado native plants are beautiful, easy to grow, and can help reverse the loss of wildlife.

At HPEC we grow native plants from seed at our own nursery, many of which are locally collected ecotypes that are particularly valuable for restoration projects. We are proud to be members of the Colorado Native Plant Society, as well as an affiliate organization of the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center in Austin, Texas, with a shared mission to support native plant preservation, conservation and use.

Photos

Evidence of Program's Success

In 2021 High Plains Environmental Center has grown and distributed over 15,000 native plants which help to conserve water, promote biodiversity, and support pollinators.

Environmental Education

Class

Education 

Beneficiaries

Adolescents/Youth (13-19 years)
Children (4-12 years)
Families
Parents
Teachers

Description

HPEC works closely with the Thompson School District to provide Environmental Education opportunities both on and off site to support relationship building and career interests in Natural Resources, Ecology, and Horticulture. We also offer adult Environmental Education workshops and presentations.

Photos

Evidence of Program's Success

Volunteer Program

Class

Environment 

Beneficiaries

General population

Description


Volunteer projects this year included planting thousands of natives for our landscaping and plant sale at our nursery, restoring native grasses along the shore of Hout Lake, mapping demonstration gardens, collecting herbarium specimens, Earth Day Clean-Up Event, cataloguing our educational library, transplanting, planting, weeding and mulching, and assisting with hospitality in our visitors center and during events.

We are so grateful for our amazing volunteers and we are actively working on expanding our volunteer program!

Photos

Evidence of Program's Success

The best way to see the success of our programs is to look at the before and after pictures of our site, including the gardens. Most projects involving our gardens are built upon month after month, year after year. Without volunteers our gardens, cold frames, etc. would not exist.

Key aspects of this profile information have been reviewed by Community First Foundation staff. Each organization is exclusively responsible for the content that appears on the profile page. Community First Foundation offers general guidance as to the purpose of each area but does not require or encourage charities to include anything in particular in each section.