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Connecticut kids will learn about Long Island Sound thanks to federal funds

Seaside Park on Long Island Sound
Sound On Sound CT
Seaside Park on Long Island Sound

Stamford climate science education center SoundWaters has received more than $350,000 from the federal government.

The money will support programs for kids in grades K-12 from Stamford, Bridgeport and Norwalk.

Leigh Shemitz is the president at SoundWaters. She said it's more important than ever that kids understand the natural world around them.

“The impact of climate change will be one of the greatest effects on young people's lives in the future,” Shemitz said. “Concern about future changes in the environment is affecting Connecticut students. And we believe that education and understanding, getting the tools to understand what's happening now and what they can do to make meaningful change, makes a difference for Connecticut students as they learn now, and as they become the future leaders of our community and state.”

Shemitz said her program gives kids hands-on experiences on Long Island Sound.

“Most of these experiences will be out in the field,” Shemitz said. “They will be aboard our schooner, they will be out on the salt marshes, the beaches, the tidal pools, right around Cove Island Park, they will be working in the lab and investigating water quality at our harbor center.”

Shemitz said Connecticut's congressional delegation, specifically Senators Chris Murphy and Richard Blumenthal, and Rep. Jim Himes (D-CT) secured the grant because they understand the importance of the Long Island Sound.

“We've been working alongside Senator Murphy, Senator Blumenthal, and Congressman Himes for years on these issues,” Shemitz said. “Their knowledge of Long Island Sound, their commitment to it and their engagement with us, goes back years and years.”

Molly is a reporter covering Connecticut. She also produces Long Story Short, a podcast exploring public policy issues across Connecticut.