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Kimberley/Cranbrook educators receive CBEEN environmental awards

Kimberley and Cranbrook educators recently received CBEEN Environmental Education Awards of Excellence.
Three of the 2024 CBEEN EE Award winners at the Outdoor Learning Conference, Banff, Alberta. (L-R, Ricki Thomson, Jessie King, Allison, Lutz).

Kimberley and Cranbrook educators recently received CBEEN Environmental Education Awards of Excellence.

Kim Urbaniak from Kimberley received the community educator award and Ricki Thomson from Cranbrook, the Intermediate Teacher award.

Urbaniak is an educator with Wildsight. She coordinates and instructs Camp Odyssey in the summer in Kimberley and Cranbrook, as well as teaching Beyond Recycling, Nature thought Season, Know Your Watershed and the McGinty Lake Education Program (developed with the Meadowbrook Community  Society). Residents may also know Urbaniak as a member of the Mainstreams Environmental Society, which taught water-based education.

“Whatever the venue, topic, or age group, Ms. Kim brings a unique, often quirky energy to outdoor learning,” said Wildsight in a statement. “This award recognizes her outstanding contributions toward encouraging environmental stewardship and sustainability through environmental education.”

Ricki Thomson from Cranbrook makes outdoor learning an integral part of her teaching, CBEEN says.

“She weaves environmental outdoor and indigenous perspective into her everyday teaching and strives to create new and creative way to do this. Recently, Ricki did a program where she wanted her students to explore water, plants and community with her students. The quality and richness of the program she did was amazing. The students had so many opportunities to learn outdoors, connect to place and the curriculum, explore, inquire, question, be creative, work together, and have fun, all while leaning about water, plants/trees and the importance of Biodiversity in their community and planet.”

The awards were presented at the 2024 Outdoor Learning Conference in Banff last month.

Also recognized were Allison LUtz, Nelson, Dylan Dainard, Invermere, Emma Shaw, Invermere, Jessie King Invermere, and Katie Niddrie, Windermere.

Carolyn Grant

About the Author: Carolyn Grant

I have been with the Kimberley Bulletin since 2001 and have enjoyed every moment of it.
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