The Warren County Conservation District tapped into the creativity of students to spur education efforts on watersheds, runoff and pollution.
Students from Sheffield, Eisenhower, Youngsville, Tidioute Community Charter School and Warren County Christian School were given a rain barrel as a blank canvas and tasked with bringing it to life artistically.
“The Rain Barrel Project is part of a Department of Environmental Protection – Environmental Education grant we received last year,” Jean Gomory, the conservation district’s watershed specialist, explained. “We also hope to encourage people to install rain barrels in their homes or businesses.”
A rain barrel is pretty much what it sounds like.
“Rain barrels are typically 55-gallon food-grade barrels that residents can attach to their home, business, or garage downspout; just about any structure with a downspout,” said Gomory. “The idea is to hold back some of that runoff so it doesn’t pick up as much pollution.”
Although she warned against drinking the collected water, she identified several uses such as watering gardens and landscaping, potted plants and hanging baskets, bathing dogs, wash the car or hose down the driveway, etc.
“If you’re expecting another heavy rain before you can use up all the water in your barrel, you can attach a soaker hose to the faucet and use it to water the nearby landscaping, or you can just dump it there. where he is “ she says.
This pedagogical effort will be stimulated by the student’s work.
“We wanted to involve schools to educate younger generations and persuade them to make informed decisions in the future,” said Gomory. “We are excited to see the finished products.”
Students have approximately one week to complete their creations.
“We will collect rain barrels from schools on March 11,” said Gomory. “They will be on display here at the office and during the month of April the public is invited to come and vote for the People’s Choice Award.”
Gomory said she and District Technician Brianna Osborne will be at the Ekey Florist and Greenhouse on May 21 from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. to answer questions and discuss rain barrels.
“The finished casks will be on display and people who stop by to inquire can put their name in a raffle to win one,” she says.