Education is a critical element of the conservation effort at the local, state and national levels. Educating young people about the benefits of conservation helps to ensure the next generation will be wise stewards of America’s natural resources.
In 1955, the National Association of Conservation Districts began a national program to encourage Americans to focus on stewardship. Stewardship Week is officially celebrated from the last Sunday in April to the first Sunday in May. It is one of the world’s largest conservation-related observances.
The program relies on conservation districts sharing and promoting stewardship and conservation through field days, educational programming, and workshops to educate citizens about the need to care for our natural resources. Many district activities extend beyond the one-week observance to include an entire year of outreach. Stewardship Week helps to remind us all of the power each person has to conserve natural resources and improve the world. When everyone works together with their local conservation district, that power continuously grows.
For more information about NACD’s Stewardship Program, email stewardship[at]nacdnet.org.
The Stewardship and Education Committee has developed a five-year rotation for stewardship topics – water, soil, habitat, forestry, and a topic of interest – and determines the theme each year. The 2020 Poster Contest theme is “Where would we BEE without Pollinators?” The 2020 Stewardship week, which was celebrated Apr. 26 – May 3, 2020, held the same theme.
Pollinators form the foundations of a healthy and sustainable future for food and the environment, but in recent years, they have shown concerning signs of decline. It’s important that we work to help them prosper by enhancing native pollinator habitats and protecting against pollinator declines.
The 2020 Stewardship and Education materials are available to download for free on NACD’s Marketplace. Click here to view and download the materials. Rules, entry forms and other resources for the 2020 NACD Poster Contest are available for download on the Poster Contest page.
The 2021 Poster Contest and Stewardship week theme is “Healthy Forests = Healthy Communities.”
The 2021 Stewardship and Education materials, rules, entry forms and other resources for the 2021 NACD Poster Contest are available for download through NACD Conservation Education Hub. The 2021 Stewardship Week will take place April 25 – May 2, 2021.
Click on the logos below to view and download resources from previous years’ stewardship themes.