S.C. Waterfowl Association receives Duke Energy grant


The South Carolina Waterfowl Association, 1234 Kinnette Trail Road, Pinewood, will receive a $27,000 grant from the Duke Energy Foundation according to a foundation announcement. The grant is among nearly $500,000 the foundation is granting to environmental nonprofit organizations in South Carolina.

The grants will fund environmental projects, wildlife conservation efforts and environmental educational programs across the Duke Energy service territory in the Palmetto State.

"We are dedicated to protecting the natural beauty of South Carolina and being good stewards of the environment," Kodwo Ghartey-Tagoe, Duke Energy's South Carolina president said. "By supporting the organizations that do this honorable work, we can help protect and restore wildlife and natural resources, and support quality environmental education programs in our state."

The South Carolina Waterfowl Association's mission is to enhance and perpetuate South Carolina's wildlife heritage through education and waterfowl habitat conservation. The SCWA has worked with South Carolina landowners to create and enhance thousands of acres of waterfowl habitats, which provide critical breeding, brood rearing and wintering grounds.

The South Carolina Waterfowl Association launched the Camp Leopold school year program in 2012 and hosts more than 3,000 youth, parent chaperones and teachers each year, according to the association's webpage at www.scwa.org. The camp is intended to "create an ecologically literate citizenry by heightening student awareness of the natural world, fine-tuning the skills necessary to read the landscape, and instilling a love, respect and admiration for the land so that each individual might develop a personal land ethic."

Camp Leopold focuses on how properly managed the land can "provide food, fiber, recreation, fish and wildlife habitat to communities in a sustainable way."

Among other grants announced by the Duke Energy Foundation is $10,000, to help Kalmia Gardens in Hartsville to bring Pee Dee area school children to the banks of the Black Creek for hands-on environmental education classes to give each of them an introduction to becoming environmental stewards.

"The Duke Energy Foundation grant will enable school children to visit Coker College's Kalmia Gardens and learn firsthand about the environment," said Dr. Will Carswell, vice president for external relations at Coker College in Darlington. "Such trips are often cost prohibitive for many school districts in the area. The grant will also help with supplies and equipment necessary to make these trips a unique hands-on learning experience for so many children."

The foundation also announced an $11,500 grant to Florence County to provide environmental educational tools such as kiosks and signs for visitors to Lake City Park and a $20,000 to the Pee Dee Land Trust to expand the Landowner Education Program, which educates private landowners about options for protecting their land and family legacy.