And also our photographer fell deeply in love with what they do.
Heaton Johnson saw a Blue Sky Fund bus (you’d know one if you’ve seen one) and immediately wanted to know more. The result–he went on a field trip. Here are his photos. And guess what! This all happily coincides with a three-day crowdfunding campaign Blue Sky Fund is doing. Read more about it, from the horse’s mouth itself.
Blue Sky Fund is on a mission to provide transformational experiences for urban youth through outdoor education. We help low-income children from the City of Richmond improve academic achievement, especially in the sciences, through active outdoor education. We develop character and leadership through outdoor experiences that expand horizons, increase confidence, and build collaboration skills. Blue Sky works primarily and strategically in Richmond’s East End, which includes the most densely poor area of our region (four contiguous public housing communities) and the state’s lowest performing schools. Our programs are designed to support our youth from elementary school through high school and we plan to reach over 1,800 kids in 2016.
Our Explorers program has been providing academic enrichment in natural environments for public school elementary students since 2008. We lead unique, experiential, science-based, monthly field trips at no cost to the school or its students. The Explorers Program gives students the opportunity to learn about nature in nature. Our 5th graders traveled to York River State Park in May for their best and last field trip of the year. This exciting trip gave the opportunity for every student to get into the river in waders and seine/dip net for aquatic critters. Students worked on identifying not only live animals but also now extinct ones when they went fossil hunting at Fossil Beach. They rounded out the day by utilizing scientific instruments to predict the weather forecast for the next day!
Explorers currently provides monthly field trips to 900 students from eight Richmond City Public Elementary Schools. With your help, Blue Sky can expand the program to reach 1600 students in the Fall.