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Association for Environmental & Outdoor education

AEOE strengthens environmental education in California by connecting providers, building professional expertise, and championing environmental literacy and outdoor learning.

Organization of the year 

AEOE, in partnership with Ten Strands and the California Environmental Literacy Initiative (CAELI), is pleased to offer the 2024 Environmental Education Organization of the Year Award. This award, given annually, recognizes an outstanding organization that is advancing the impact of environmental and outdoor education in California in a meaningful way by offering innovative programs, following research-based best practices, and promoting equitable access to environmental learning. 

Any person can nominate an organization for this award and nominees do not need to be AEOE Organizational Members. Nominations are kept on file for one year for future consideration. Each award winner is chosen by AEOE's Awards Panel (including a representative from Ten Strands) and recognized at the annual Spring Statewide Conference. You can access the nomination form questions here if you would like to see them ahead of time to prepare your submission

The 2024 Organization of the Year: Riverside-Corona Resource Conservation District

Please join us in celebrating Riverside-Corona Resource Conservation District (RCRCD) as the 2024 Environmental Education Organization of the Year! RCRCD works to sustain natural resources and helps others conserve resources, so that high quality water, land, soil, wildlife, air and plant life will be abundant forever. The district advocates that each acre of land be managed according to its needs. District programs foster the sustainable use of natural resources for each land use, including native habitats, urban/suburban areas, and agriculture. 

Their impact on the community is thoughtful and far-reaching, with an over 40-year history of outreach to the deaf community and the diverse cultures in their jurisdiction. From their nomination, “RCRCD works to empower people to be stewards (caretakers) of natural resources and fosters stewardship by providing a variety of free environmental education programs, volunteer opportunities, community science activities, tours /field trips, and community engagement for all ages.”

RCRCD’s contributions will be celebrated at our Annual Statewide Conference in May. Congratulations and thank you, RCRCD!

The 2023 Organization of the Year: Friends of the Los Angeles River

Please join us in celebrating Friends of the Los Angeles River (FoLAR) as the 2023 Environmental Education Organization of the Year! FoLAR's mission is to build capacity for communities, students, and future leaders to advocate for nature, climate, and equity on the Los Angeles River. FoLAR's innovative and culturally responsive approach to river restoration and community engagement has made it a national leader in the field of urban river revitalization, and a powerful force for positive change in the Los Angeles region and beyond. Additionally, members of their staff have contributed to numerous statewide initiatives such as the development of California's Blueprint for Environmental Literacy, serving as past California Regional Environmental Education Community (CREEC) Network Coordinator for Region 11, acting as CAELI Leadership Council member, and serving as mentors for AEOE's Environmental Educator Certification Program. for more information about FoLAR, click here to access our joint press release

The 2022 Organization of the Year is Save California Salmon! Please join us in celebrating the impact Save California Salmon (SCS) has in northern California and beyond. Justice for California tribes and the environment is at the heart of SCS’s work. They are a Native-led organization that specializes in organizing, policy advocacy, leadership and curriculum development, media, hosting events, and youth action. Click here to access our joint press release to learn more about their important work.

The 2021 Organization of the Year is Youth Outside! Youth Outside (now known as Justice Outside) advances racial justice and equity in the outdoor and environmental movement. They shift resources to, build power with, and center the voices and leadership of Black, Indigenous, and People of Color because the health of current and future generations demands it. Youth Outside’s vision is of “a just world where Black, Indigenous, and Communities of Color experience safety, health, and abundant joy through meaningful relationships with one another and the outdoors.” Read more about their great work here and join us in celebrating their contributions to the field.

About AEOE

The Association for Environmental and Outdoor Education (AEOE) is the professional association for environmental and outdoor education in California, providing programs and practitioners with the tools, resources, and expertise to ensure that future generations are equipped with the skills, knowledge, and experiences necessary to develop lifelong connections to the natural world and the commitment to sustain it.  

About Ten Strands

Ten Strands’ mission is to strengthen partnerships and strategies that will bring environmental literacy to all of California’s K-12 students. Ten Strands supports professional development opportunities and outdoor education resources so teachers can provide students with engaging environment-based educational experiences both inside and outside the classroom.


The California Environmental Literacy Initiative (CAELI), led by Ten Strands, works statewide with guidance from a leadership council to create systems change in support of environmental literacy with a focus on access, equity, and cultural relevance for all students.



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