BNC Annual Report for Fiscal Year 2018
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Recognizing that diversity is as important in organizational culture as it is in nature, a central priority of Mass Audubon’s strategic plan is ensuring that we share the gift of connection to nature with the broadest group of people, and do it in ways that are most meaningful to them. As an urban sanctuary nestled within some of Boston’s most diverse neighborhoods, Boston Nature Center (BNC) enjoys unique opportunities to explore and practice ways of being welcoming. This imperative informs much of what we do and how we do it.
To amplify the reach of our programs, BNC partners with the Boston Public Schools, Head Start programs, and home school groups to infuse their curricula with hands-on, minds-on science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM). We offer community members of all ages a wide variety of high quality, engaging, and affordable programs, especially during the summer, that meet the needs of working families and keep urban young people learning and growing all year long. Our three-year environmental internship program for teens gives them an opportunity to gain invaluable leadership and employment experience—and a chance to experience being a role model for younger members of their communities. Community gardeners, bee keepers, and composters all call BNC home.
Most of our staff come from the communities we serve and we intentionally train them to celebrate diversity and inclusion. As a result, they meet visitors “where they are.” Preschool teachers who overhear a child referring to a classmate by the wrong pronoun are trained to gently encourage them to ask their friend which pronoun they prefer. Individuals who have sensory challenges will find that we have a trail just for them, and that our green building is also fully accessible. Many of our staff members are bilingual and our sanctuary guides are available in Spanish and Braille. Our numerous volunteer groups include participants who attend adult day programs.
We hope that you will find yourself here at the BNC. We honor and celebrate diversity and inclusion. We embrace our extended community as family. Come visit the BNC, explore the two miles of trails and boardwalks, the old and the new orchards, and join us in this journey of respecting and welcoming each other as we protect nature for ourselves and for wildlife.