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‘Ding’ Darling Wildlife Society awards grants to teachers

By Staff | Dec 27, 2017
Lee County, Cape Coral, Challenger Middle School, Sheryl Terepka, Grades 6-8, Wild about Wetlands.
Lee County, Fort Myers, Colonial Elementary, Heidi Brennan, Grade 5, Increasing Nature Awareness through Experience.
Collier County, Immokalee, Immokalee Middle School, Melanie Villa, Grades 6-8, All Creatures Great & Small.
Charlotte County, Port Charlotte, Neil Armstrong Elementary, Barbara Lisson, Grades K & 2, Hydroponic Community Garden.
Lee County, Cape Coral, Patriot Elementary, Linda Grant, Grade 4, Heroes of the Environment.

“Ding” Darling Wildlife Society – Friends of the Refuge awarded teachers from Lee, Charlotte and Collier counties over $7,000 in education grants for their students last Monday at J.N. “Ding” Darling National Wildlife Refuge.

The grants allow teachers to buy books and teaching aids, go on field trips, do science projects and conduct environmental projects in the community. The teachers who won the grants were Anji and Rachel Reinke of Lehigh Elementary, Ann Franke of The Sanibel School, Barbara Lisson of Neil Armstrong Elementary, Hedi Brennan of Colonial Elementary, Linda Grant of Patriot Elementary, Melanie Villa of Immokalee Middle School, Sheryl Terepka of Challenger Middle School and Susie Hassett of Robinson Littleton Elementary.

The grants are open to elementary, middle and high school teachers in Lee, Charlotte, Collier, Glades and Hendry counties. The next set of teacher grants won’t be awarded until next year.

The “Ding” Darling Wildlife Society Conservation Education Endowment Fund, which allocates the teacher grants, was started by the late Kip Koss, Jay “Ding” Darling’s grandson. Over the years, DDWS has given more than $73,000 to local schools.

“We’ve been doing this for the past 10 years. Kip Koss established this fund so that we could supplement the schools that are poorly funded for environmental education,” said Wendy Kindig, secretary of the “Ding” Darling Wildlife Society.