Metropolitan program supports Cal Poly Pomona environmental education garden

Aug. 22, 2002
Metropolitan Water District has committed to help fund the expansion of an environmental education garden at California Polytechnic University, Pomona to showcase water-wise gardens.


"It is so important for us to pass on to our children that water is a precious resource and we should all take care of it. Conservation is one of the most important things we can do and this project shows people just how it can be done beautifully." -- Metropolitan Water District Director David De Jesus

POMONA, Calif., Aug. 22, 2002 -- An environmental education garden at California Polytechnic University, Pomona will be expanded to showcase water-wise gardens and their connection to conservation with the help of Metropolitan Water District's Community Partnering Program.

Metropolitan Director David De Jesus, who represents Three Valleys Municipal Water District on MWD's board of directors, presented a $10,000 community partnering check to Dr. Peggy Sears Perry, director for the university's Center for Garden-based education. De Jesus was joined by Muriel O'Brien, president of Three Valleys board, and Three Valleys General Manager Richard Hansen.

"Metropolitan selected the AGRIscapes project because it provides a compelling forum for students of all ages and the surrounding community to learn about native plants and their connection to conservation," De Jesus said.

"It is so important for us to pass on to our children that water is a precious resource and we should all take care of it. Conservation is one of the most important things we can do and this project shows people just how it can be done beautifully."

Metropolitan's three-year-old Community Partnering Program encourages the discussion of water conservation and other issues important to the region by supporting research, educational collaborations at all levels and policy forums, De Jesus said at a recent ceremony at Cal Poly's Environmental Education Garden at AGRIscapes.

The Environmental Education Garden is part of Cal Poly's AGRIscapes complex, a 40-acre education and demonstration center designed to educate the public about food, agriculture and the role of water conservation in improving the sustainability of the urban environment.

"This grant will help us expand our program to teach gardeners of all ages about the beauty and variety of ornamental and edible plants available for use in the Southern California landscape that can survive with minimal irrigation," Perry said.

Metropolitan's sponsorship of the garden coincides with the district's on-going public information campaign that encourages painless changes in outdoor water use and promotes appreciation of native, drought-proof plants.

"It's a message vitally important to Metropolitan and its member agencies, which are charged with delivering limited resources to an ever-growing Southern California," De Jesus said.

This year, Metropolitan will distribute more than $600,000 in sponsorships and in-kind services to programs that demonstrate a value-added benefit to Metropolitan and its 26 member public agencies, serving 17 million water consumers in six Southern California counties.

Under the Community Partnering Program, sponsorships are provided for water-related activities such as public forums, educational and research programs, exhibits and other community-based events. Memberships in national, state, regional and local associations that support MWD's corporate and mission statements also are eligible, as well as educational mini-grants and innovative conservation pilot programs.

To learn more about AGRIscapes, visit Cal Poly's web site on the subject at http://www.csupomona.edu/~agriscapes/index2.html.

For more information about Metropolitan's programs, visit the district's Web site, http://www.mwdh2o.com.

The Metropolitan Water District of Southern California is a cooperative of 26 cities and water agencies serving 17 million people in six counties. The district imports water from the Colorado River and Northern California to supplement local supplies, and helps its members to develop increased water conservation, recycling, storage and other water-management programs.

SOURCE: Metropolitan Water District of Southern California

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