Center Road School and Our Vital Pollinators: Birds, Bats, Bees, and Butterflies

In September of 2017, Lea Castle submitted a Pratt and Whitney Green Power Grant Application for Our Vital Pollinators: Birds, Bats, Bees, and Butterflies.

The case that she was making in the grant was that birds, bats, bees, and butterflies are essential to our existence. Lea didn’t overstate her case. Even as far back as Darwin it was pointed out that “plant species would face extinction if the bumblebee were to disappear.” (1)

The grant committee agreed and awarded them the money they requested to – “In conjunction with DEEP (Belding Wildlife Management Area – Vernon) & Strong Family Farm (non-profit working farm – Vernon), P&W employees will work with Vernon’s Center Road School Elementary to provide education, resources, and hands-on community activities supporting a positive co-habitation with birds, bats, bees, and butterflies.”

Their planned outreach, which involved students, family members, and community members that worked together to identify, construct, and erect bird and bat houses at both Strong Family Farm, and the Belding Wildlife Management Area.

In addition to that work, they identified, procured and planted native plants that provide food for the area’s  birds, bats, bees, and butterflies.

On Earth Day, (Sunday, April 22, 2018) bird and bat houses were installed at the farm. At the same time, along the fence that runs between the school and the farm, native pollinating plants were also installed with help from Nancy Strong who supplied the photos.

We have had a close connection with the school over many years and what they’ve done with this grant means a lot to us!

Thank you Lea Castle, William Castle, Eli Ross, Tracey DeMarco, Mario Bochiechio, Vin Kowalczyk for putting together and submitting the grant, and thank you to the students and their families who all helped build and setup the bird and bat houses, and plant the flowers the pollinators will love!

To read more about the grant and how it will benefit the students of the school click here!

(1) ‘’   (Though this article is primarily on the research conducted for a particular quote about bees, it references similar types of mentions about bees that you may find of interest.)