published on May 26, 2016 - 9:09 PM
Written by The Business Journal Staff

The Fresno Life and Environmental Science (LES) Program at Highway City has been selected as a winner of the national Parks Build Community campaign and will receive a $20,000 grant from the National Recreation and Park Association (NRPA) and The Walt Disney Co.

Community members voted for the winning project throughout Earth Month in April.

Parks Build Community helps to revitalize and restore local parks and park programs across the country. The campaign was promoted on social media, through Disney’s ABC affiliates and via other Disney, ABC and ESPN properties.

The City of Fresno Parks After School Recreation and Community Services (PARCS) Department’s LES Program was one of 15 projects selected to receive grant funding. 

The $20,000 grant will help provide informal hands-on learning opportunities that increase awareness and interest in our natural world through field trips, activities, and presentations. 

LES will bring inner-city, low-income urban residents to the San Joaquin River for service projects and river excursions in canoeing, kayaking and stand up paddle boarding.

“This is an award-winning educational program,” said Manuel Mollinedo, director of the PARCS Department.  “We have dedicated staff that are passionate about providing young people a meaningful science-based recreation opportunity.   

“Many of our urban children and youth do not have the luxury of participating in an outdoor camping experience along the San Joaquin River where they can learn about the riparian habitat while canoeing and swimming,” Mollinedo added. 

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