CNW: More than 17,000 students in 160 schools across Canada to access free hands-on water education programs in 2011

TORONTO, March 21 /CNW/ – In recognition of World Water Day, TD Friends of the Environment Foundation (TD FEF) is announcing a major funding milestone: $250,000 in support of the Safe Drinking Water Foundation’s educational youth programs delivered across Canada since 2005. More than $45,000 has been donated to date in 2011.

“Supporting educational opportunities for youth is a priority for us,” said Mary Desjardins, Executive Director, TD Friends of the Environment Foundation (TD FEF). “Through our support of Safe Drinking Water Foundation, we’re helping students better understand both global and local water issues. This is just one example of how we’re helping foster the next generation of environmental leaders.”

Three Safe Drinking Water Foundation (SDWF) programs are offered to elementary and high schools across Canada with support from TD FEF: Operation Water Drop, Operation Water Pollution, and Operation Water Biology. Teachers can access lesson plans, and students are provided with free water-testing kits, allowing them to complete scientific field experiments on local water sources in their community.

More than 58 local TD FEF Chapters across the country support SDWF on an annual basis, helping deliver free educational program kits to more than 90,000 students at 978 schools in 10 provinces and 2 territories across Canada since 1990.

“Our programs are designed to complement local curriculum, encouraging students to get excited about the science behind water-quality issues by participating in interactive, experiential-based learning,” said Nicole Biederbeck, Director of Education of Safe Drinking Water Foundation. “For example, the Operation Water Drop program allows high school students to conduct hands-on tests for 13 different parameters included in the Guidelines for Canadian Drinking Water Quality, and then compare their results to other treated drinking water supplies and a raw source water sample.”

More than 160 schools have received SDWF educational program kits to date during the 2010-2011 school year. Schools can learn more about requesting a sponsored Operation Water Drop kit online at www.safewater.org, or e-mail info@safewater.org

About TD FEF:

Since 1990, TD FEF has provided more than $54 million in funding to over 19,500 grassroots environment and wildlife projects across Canada. Thousands of donors give to TD FEF on a monthly basis and TD Bank Group contributes in excess of $1 million annually. TD also covers the management costs of running TD FEF, which guarantees 100 per cent of every dollar donated goes directly to funding environment and wildlife projects in the community where the donation was made. For more information on how to donate and get involved in your community, visit www.tdfef.com.

About Safe Drinking Water Foundation:

Safe Drinking Water Foundation is a registered charitable organization, whose purpose is to find treatment and preventative solutions to make surface and ground water safe for human consumption in rural areas of Canada, and the world. With a focus on developing partnerships with rural communities throughout Canada and around the world, SDWF’s intent is to effect change at the municipal, provincial, and federal levels as well as within civil society and industries involved in the protection and production of public water supplies.

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