Fairfield County Bank has awarded a $7,000 grant to Woodcock Nature Center to support its general operations as well as a new outreach effort to offer one of the nature center’s popular field trip programs to an elementary school in an under-served community. The bank has been a partner to the Nature Center since 2017.

“It is a testament to Fairfield County Bank’s devotion to our community that it continues to deepen not only its financial commitment to Woodcock but that the bank’s management team has increasingly dedicated its time and energy into ensuring the continued growth of our organization,” Woodcock Executive Director Lenore Eggleston Herbst said.

Woodcock and Fairfield County Bank are working together to make the nature center’s hands-on nature education possible for a wider audience.

“Woodcock Nature Center is a gem for Fairfield County. We are proud to partner with the nature center to find ways to make it even more accessible to children across the county — particularly those who might not normally get a chance to immerse themselves in nature and environmental education. A healthy environment and a healthy community go hand in hand,” said Fairfield County Bank Vice President Doreen McManus

Each year, more than 4,000 pre-school and elementary students visit the nature center through class field trips which are designed to meet the state’s Core Science Curriculum Frameworks and Next Generation Science Standards.

Programs cover a range of topics designed to enhance classroom natural science curricula while building awareness and understanding of local environments. On-site programs give students the opportunity to learn outside while investigating the wetland and forest trails.

Programs have included Vernal Pools Study, Tree ID, Insects, Hibernation and most recently, in partnership with the Ridgefield School District, a bio-mimicry program which reached nearly every fourth grader in the district. Also during 2018-19, every second grader in Wilton visited for Plants & Seeds and every third graders studied tree identification.

Information: woodcocknaturecenter.org.