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Photos by Rachel Howard Community members celebrate a grant presented by the Alabama Mountains Rivers Valleys Resource, Conservation & Development Council that will fund eight projects in Morgan County. Pictured from left to right are Renona Seibert, T.J. Prueitt, Fischer Barbee, Sheena Dugger, Barb Helton, Sen. Arthur Orr, Rep. Parker Moore, Bella Parker, Karissa Lang, Darren Tucker and Brett Crow.

$35k grant funds Morgan projects

Photo by Rachel Howard
Fischer Barbee plays at the playground at Crestline Elementary School Oct. 20.

By Staff Reports

A grant provided by Alabama Mountains Rivers Valleys Resource, Conservation & Development Council was presented Oct. 20 at Crestline Elementary School. Totaling $35,000, the funds will be divided between eight projects in Morgan County.

At Crestline Elementary, a SNAP outdoor classroom was made possible with the funds. Several exploration areas were established to encourage creativity and enhance the senses. Other items such as sunshades, a picnic table, water hose, birdbath and benches were purchased and installed.

The grant also impacted the Small Ruminant Young Farmer Outreach program in a partnership with the Morgan County 4H. Funds were used to provide goats and the corresponding management equipment necessary to begin a small livestock enterprise feasible for those with limited resources.

At Cotaco School, the grant provided funding to complete Phase 1 of a new outdoor classroom. The outdoor classroom will allow students in grades pre-K through 8th to participate in hands-on, inquiry-based learning activities while meeting Alabama State Science standards.

An outdoor learning area was built using grant money at the Somerville Baptist Learning Center. This art, music art gardening and construction learning area will consist of more than 1,500 square feet of outdoor space to learn and explore as well as 440 square feet of outdoor covered classroom space. Students will be able to make a joyful noise using instruments in the music area, plant a garden and watch roots grow and dig and move gravel in the construction area. There will also be a bridge used to cross over a large creek in the gravel area to an additional gardening area.

The grant will also allow for the purchase of new tables and table coverings for the historic Somerville courthouse, adding a professional look when hosting events at the historic courthouse.

For the Career Academies of Decatur, a mobile tool chest for students to use between programs and needed classroom updates to follow the needs of Career Tech education, the grant provided the needed workstations for hands-on learning as well, directly impacting 45 students each day.

The Alabama Mountains Rivers Valleys RC & D Council, Inc. includes eight counties located along the Tennessee River in northeastern Alabama. These counties are Cullman, DeKalb, Jackson, Lawrence, Limestone, Madison, Marshall and Morgan.

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