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Rainwater Revival awards grant to Utopia ISD; BHS


Utopia ISD has been awarded a $1,000 grant to support the school's plan to implement a rainwater harvesting system and educate students about water conservation. The grant was funded by the auction of professionally designed and painted rain barrels at last year's Rainwater Revival, a free event that shares rain catchment techniques for all levels of interest. In addition, Bandera High School's drafting and building trades classes received a special grant.
"The innovation and enthusiasm that these schools, through their administrators and teachers, bring to their students is very gratifying," said Karen Ford, a Hill Country Alliance board member and chair of the annual Rainwater Revival. "These students will learn the importance of water conservation and that conservation is easy, fun, and a very important thing to do."
Utopia ISD will install a rainwater harvesting system and use it to introduce surface and groundwater issues to students across all grade levels. One hundred percent of the student body will be involved in some way in the conservation and catchment program - the agricultural mechanics class will install the catchment system, the environmental science class will consider water sustainability across the campus over time, the senior government class will study Texas ground and surface policy issues, elementary students will be charged with watering the plants and the high school art class will paint the rain barrels.
UISD's interest in developing a green campus began several years ago when it partnered with Keep Utopia Beautiful on a recycling program and last school year the Utopia Garden Club helped the school plant a keyhole garden. The school plans to use its campus as a demonstration project for the larger community.
Bandera High School received a special grant from the Hill Country Alliance, which sponsors the Rainwater Revival, for students in the drafting and building trades program to evaluate the school's extensive rainwater harvest system and to develop an information booklet on rainwater catchment, including system schematics, to share with other area schools. HCA applauded the school's desire to help other schools learn from its program and plan their own water catchment and conservation programs.
The Rainwater Revival is an annual celebration of collection, conservation and common sense designed to help individuals and businesses learn how to capture rainwater for in-home and outdoor irrigation. The free event is sponsored by the Hill Country Alliance and will be held Saturday, Nov. 2, 2013 at the Boerne Convention Center. For more information, visit www.rainwaterrevival.com.
The Hill Country Alliance is a non-profit organization whose purpose is to raise public awareness and build community support around the need to preserve the natural resources and heritage of the Central Texas Hill Country. To learn more about Hill Country Alliance initiatives, please visit www.hillcountryalliance.org.