Gulf Guardian Award
Education and Outreach Program for the Coastal Bend
Since September 2006, Nueces River Authority (NRA) has been using innovative techniques to educate the people of the Nueces River Basin and Texas Gulf Coast's adjoining coastal basins to demonstrat the importance of clean waterways for drinking water, recreation, land, and animal health. The program is supported by the Clean Rivers Program and local contracts. They partner with the Center for Coastal Studies at Texas A&M University Corpus Christi, Texas Agrilife Extension, Coastal Bend Bays and Estuary Program, Texas State Aquarium - Sea Lab and others. Over the past three years, NRA's Education and Outreach Program for the Coastal Bend has delivered education to over 2800 people at 52 events in Nueces, Bee, Jim Wells, and Refugio Counties. Using original hands-on teaching tools, they take the lesson to the people. The presentations use the Nueces Basin Watershed Model, the Wetland on Wheels, and a Rainfall Runoff Model - all hands-on, interactive tools. The presentations touch on questions of the Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills (TEKS) standardized tests (water cycle, weathering, non-renewable resources, habitats, adaptations, conservation, use of natural resources, limitations of models, sources of water in a watershed, and the relationships between ground and surface water) to help support the school curriculum.
Nueces River Authority's Beth Almaraz