Indian River Soil, Water Conservation District encourages stewardship

INDIAN RIVER COUNTY – As a part of Indian River County for 66 years, the Indian River Soil and Water Conservation District wants to remind you that each of us has a responsibility to be a good steward of natural resources during the annual Stewardship Week celebration.

The National Association of Conservation Districts (NACD) is celebrating the 56th year of Stewardship week during April 24 – May 1. The 2011 Stewardship Week is themed “Forests for People – More Than You Can Imagine.” Trees provide us with shade, wood products, fuel, as well as help clean the air we breathe.

David E. Gunter acts as the Chairman of the Board of Supervisors for the Indian River Soil and Water Conservation District. The District was formed for the purpose of developing a program of management and conservation of the soil, water and related natural resources of Indian River County and to promote and encourage the voluntary implementation of conservation practices on privately owned land.

A locally elected board of non-salaried public officials governs the District. During Stewardship Week, the Indian River Soil and Water Conservation District will be finalizing details necessary to complete their annual Free Tree Planting Event where the District plants a total of 100 Bald Cypress trees around various community’s’ storm water ponds, at no cost to the homeowners, in an effort to increase water quality before it eventually flows into the Indian River Lagoon.

The District’s Annual Tree Sale was a huge success this year. A record 1800 tree seedlings were sold to residents at cost. There was no profit made by the District. The District has also held several educational contests focusing on the Stewardship Theme. These contests included poster, poetry and public speaking. Winning entries were showcased at the District’s booth at the Indian River County Firefighters’ Fair and will also be shown at the Earth Day Celebration in Sebastian on April 23.

“Understanding the importance of forests in our daily lives is the key connection of the 2011 NACD Stewardship theme,” says NACD President Gene Schmidt. “Forests play a critical role in providing clean water, healthy wildlife habitat, as well as jobs for our citizens and products that we use every day.”

The Indian River Soil and Water Conservation District is a member of the National Association of Conservation Districts (www.nacdnet.org) which oversees the Stewardship Week program. Stewardship Week is one of the largest national annual programs to promote conservation. NACD represents the nation’s 3,000 conservation districts, which were established to encourage resource conservation across the country.

For information about Stewardship Week and conservation, contact the Indian River Soil and Water Conservation District at (772) 770-5005 or visit our website at www.irccdd.com/swcd/.

Additional information about forestry education is available on the NACD website at www.nacdnet.org/education/resources/.

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