What Is MEEA For?
Imagine the first time you ever saw a moose, or explored a tide pool, felt the cool water of the ocean wash over your skin, climbed a mountain... Now imagine a life where you live only hour from the ocean in Maine but have never walked on the beach, never hiked a mountain, never heard the waves crashing, or seen the beauty of sand pipers in flight. Many economic barriers exist for many Maine children that could make this unbelievable statement their actual reality. At MEEA, we believe that ALL Maine children have the right to experience the unimaginable beauty of the sate we are so lucky to inhabit.
Today, MEEA is focused on smart growth: better access to funding for transformative projects, improving organizational function, and broadening our reach to a more diverse audience. In the past few years, MEEA has achieved success under all these measures.
MEEA is dedicated to working to raise funds to support quality environmental education programs for ALL Mainers. For example, In 2014 MEEA collaborated on a successful EPA EE grant enabling MEEA to provide subgrants to four organizations offering innovative programming. MEEA also hosts an annual conference that is the foremost gathering of environmental educators in Maine. In 2015 private foundation funding enabled MEEA to host an innovative event, bringing together leaders from diverse sectors, resulting in the highest conference attendance in history.
MEEA is also committed to sharing the stories or our members to highlight the empowering work that is happening in our state in the field of environmental and outdoor education. MEEA hosts an annual awards process to recognize the amazing educators, students, schools, green businesses, and programs in our state.
MEEA is energized about supporting climate change education in Maine. In partnership with the New England Environmental Education Alliance, MEEA has received a regional EPA EE grant to convene the Climate Change / Behavior Change Conference in March 2016.
New initiatives also include developing capacity for a youth leadership, working on developing a school transformation model that will highlight best EE practices to better support our public schools, and seeding formal/informal EE partnerships in Maine. MEEA's continued work in advocacy, leadership development, evaluation, collaboration and ELP implementation is deeply impacting the future of environmental education in Maine, New England and the Nation.