by Alex Francis
For more than 20 years, Art From Scrap has given Santa Barbara, California residents a way to combine environmental protection, preservation, and education with artistic expression—and what started as a way to bring art into schools has grown into a multi-faceted program with goals that extend far beyond aesthetics. In order to reflect this evolution and better represent its emphasis on environmental education, Art From Scrap has changed its name to Explore Ecology.
“Protecting existing programs is important and Art From Scrap will be here for years to come,” explained Explore Ecology’s director, Cay Sanchez. “While Art From Scrap is well known for our ReUse retail store and arts center, we also conduct reduce, reuse, recycle field trips at the AFS Center for thousands of students each year.”
Goal of Environmental Preservation Remains the Same
With its new name, Explore Ecology hopes to identify themselves as more than just an arts organization and draw attention to their efforts to educate the community and preserve the environment. Art From Scrap’s popular art programs and ReUse store, which accepts donations and sells all kinds of clean, reusable materials to keep them out of landfills, will continue to operate under Explore Ecology.
In addition to art and education programs, Explore Ecology also runs the Watershed Resource Center at Arroyo Burro Beach in Santa Barbara. The Center is a site where members of the community can go to participate in educational programs and learn about the importance of watershed restoration, its role in improving water quality, and ways to actively protect the local creeks, wetlands, and ocean.
The many programs and services that Art From Scrap provided for the Santa Barbara community reached as many as 12,000 students every year, and the push toward widespread awareness and education will continue just as fervently under the new name. Cay Sanchez commented, “We are thrilled to have evolved into Explore Ecology. As advocates of environmental education and art discovery, we’re so proud to be acknowledging the breadth and depth of our services.” For more information about Explore Ecology, visit www.exploreecology.org.
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