Arcadia’s Fund for Environmental Education

Springfield class trip to Arcadia Wildlife Sanctuary © Phil Doyle
Springfield class trip to Arcadia Wildlife Sanctuary © Phil Doyle
Give Now

From the 1976 founding of Massachusetts’ first nature preschool to the fall 2015 launch of “Life in a Changing Climate” in collaboration with Hampshire Regional School District, Arcadia Wildlife Sanctuary has shown itself to be a regional and national leader in innovative environmental education.

To ensure Arcadia’s continued ability to respond to the Pioneer Valley’s need for environmental education that is grounded in science while cultivating a deep connection between people, place, and wildlife, the Fund for Environmental Education is being established with a goal of $20,000. 

Arcadia’s tradition of timely and impactful programs includes:

  • Arcadia’s Nature Preschool, the first in Massachusetts and one of the first in the nation, celebrates 40 years of fostering children’s meaningful relationships with the natural world in 2016.
  • Arcadia Nature Day Camp, offered since the 1940s, imbues young people with a love of nature that continues into adulthood.
  • School field trips and classroom visits with environmental lessons, including Wild about Westfield where for decades all second graders in Westfield have received an introduction to the natural world. 
  • “Life in a Changing Climate,” launched fall 2015 in collaboration with Hampshire Regional School District, brings middle and high schoolers robust science education that also empowers young people to take action to reduce their impact on the environment.

Educator from Arcadia Wildlife Sanctuary with students
Arcadia Educator Brittany Gutermuth teaching the Life in a Changing Climate program. Photo © Phil Doyle
A gift to the Environmental Education Fund will be dedicated for programming in the Pioneer Valley, including:

  • Continuing the “Life in A Changing Climate” program beyond its initial year of funding from the Community Foundation of Western Massachusetts, and expanding the program to new schools.
  • Offering environmental education programs in underserved schools and communities, especially Holyoke and Springfield.
  • Refining and developing teacher training and curricula that inspire teachers to bring the natural world and scientific approaches into their classrooms.
  • Developing new environmental education programs in response to requests from teachers and communities.

How You Can Help

Join us in fostering a life-long love of nature, building knowledge about climate change and how to address it, and the strengthening of connections between people, place, and wildlife with a gift to the Fund for Environmental Education.

Ways to Give:

Donate Online

  • By Phone: 413-584-3009
  • By Mail: Arcadia Wildlife Sanctuary
                127 Combs Road
                Easthampton, MA 01027

Questions or More Information

Contact Sanctuary Director Jonah Keane at 413-584-3009 or

What Others Are Saying...

Brittany Gutermuth, “Life in a Changing Climate” coordinator, “First Child in the Woods” walk leader, and Arcadia Nature Preschool parent

 “Love of place reminds us of the intrinsic value of life.  We gain awareness of all that supports us as well as the other lives – the trees and insects, the birds and grasses - who share the place with us. All have a right to a healthy environment. We aren’t stepping back from technology, but we need to balance it with time spent connecting to the natural world.”

The Fisher Sisters 1990s graduates of Arcadia’s Nature Preschool

Fisher sisters by the school house at Arcadia Wildlife Sanctuary

Laura Fisher: Lawyer, Community Garden Coordinator & Land Conservationist “Nature can teach everyone a lesson or two, regardless of who you are.”

Mary Fisher, High School Chemistry Teacher & Student Club Leader “The nature preschool set the stage for my going into science. The hands on activities of the preschool are the same as the experimental approaches of the research lab. “