Audubon Naturalist Society (ANS) Awarded Jack Kent Cooke Foundation 2016 Good Neighbor Grant

CHEVY CHASE, MD—Audubon Naturalist Society (ANS) is one of this year’s recipients of the Jack Kent Cooke Foundation 2016 Good Neighbor Grants for its water quality monitoring, Communities for Clean Streams work.

“This funding furthers the Audubon Naturalist Society mission of connecting people to nature, by enabling us to provide high school students with opportunities to further their academic careers and lead environmental stewardship projects in their own communities,” said ANS Executive Director Lisa Alexander.

ANS was awarded a $15,000 Good Neighbor Grant by the Cooke Foundation this April. The selection process was very competitive. ANS was selected as one of seven organizations, from a pool of 148 applicants. With this funding, ANS will establish Clean Streams Academies at three Maryland public high schools this coming fall. Approximately 24 high schools students, 8 students in each high school academy, will spend ten weeks of intensive hands-on training and research on the science of water quality monitoring.

The students will use the ANS Creek Critters app to learn how to find and identify the macroinvertebrate organisms that live in freshwater streams and are indicators of stream health. The students will identify threats to local water quality in their neighborhoods and create stewardship action projects to protect local waterways.

The ANS Clean Streams Academy is intended for high school students with an interest in scientific careers. Through the academy experience, ANS environmental educators will provide students with background training, coaching, materials and support to carry out independent research and education projects.

“The Audubon Naturalist Society’s Stream Science Academy provides students with an excellent opportunity for a hands-on science education,” said Jack Kent Cooke Foundation Executive Director Harold O. Levy. “It’s important to provide funding so that underprivileged students can participate in high-quality learning experiences that are critical for nurturing their aspirations in science.”

To learn more about Audubon Naturalist Society’s water quality monitoring work, Creek Critters app and Communities for Clean Streams, visit

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CONTACT: Kelli Holsendolph, 301-652-9188 ext. 23, [email protected]