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Watchable Wildlife to grant nature backpacks to daycares

June 6, 2012 - 2:47pm -- idfg-daygen

BOISE, ID-

The Idaho Department of Fish and Game’s Watchable Wildlife Program is accepting applications for the Idaho Nature Backpack Grant, which awards a nature backpack to preschools and child care facilities in Ada and Canyon Counties.

The backpacks will contain a variety of items to encourage daily outdoor exploration and physical activity, such as insect nets, binoculars, leaf printing kits, magnifying glasses, bug boxes, activity idea books, field guides, and more.

Each backpack kit is valued at approximately $250 and contains numerous items that can be used in any location.

Studies show children who play outside are healthier, have higher self-esteem, are good problem-solvers, have good self-discipline and do better in school.

Fifty grants will be awarded to qualified applicants in Ada and Canyon Counties during the pilot year of this program. Applicants must be a licensed year-round child care facility, a year-round home child care provider, or a preschool facility in Idaho.

Grants will be awarded to those who demonstrate a need and the commitment to use the items frequently.

More information and an application can be found online or by email (deniz.aygen@idfg.idaho.gov). Applications are due July 15, 2012. Backpacks will be awarded in the fall.