1/5th of everything we get from general donations goes to the Water Professional Program. We’ve partnered with UNESCO-IHE & Florida Earth to help bring graduate students and professionals from places with serious water problems around the world to this educational program so that they can get some of the best water management training in the world. Upon graduation, those students then take that training back to their home countries and states and use it to help fix their water problems there. This is our immediate and direct impact.*
The other 4/5 of our budget goes to projects we make happen ourselves. The small solar aquaponics sustainability labs are the easiest of these to make happen, because they come at relatively low price tag. They’re also totally awesome – kids, parents, teachers all love them. These labs help younger kids relate to what things like “symbiotic environmentalism” and “environmental sustainability” mean in real, tangible ways. We hope that these labs help to get kids involved and caring about symbiotic environmentalism and to inspire fresh minds to help us seek out new and innovative solutions to growing problems. This is our immediate, indirect impact. If a donor raises at least $1000.00 for our cause we will attempt to place one of these labs in the school of their choice.
In addition to the small aquaponics labs, we have two other large projects we are working to fund, the large solar aquaponic sustainability labs for High Schools, and the schoolyard greening. These projects require a much larger budget, as well as much more planning and execution time. The portion of donations that are not distributed to the Water Professionals program or used to put micro systems in schools is pooled with the funds from our grant applications for these projects and goes towards making these projects happen. These projects both inspire students and give them hands on experience with these new kinds environmental sustainability systems, which can lead to job opportunities, grants, and scholarships after graduation. This is our longer term indirect and direct impact.
Doing the majority of these programs ourselves means that we can stay lean on administrative and operating costs, so that most of our donation funds go to projects, not the system of making them happen.
* To understand more about how water resources critically effect energy and technology production (in addition to many other things) and why it is so important to us as gamers, please take a look at these articles:
How Water and Energy are Linked
Thirsty High Tech
Data Centers and Water Consumption