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Youth Resilience Expo

Students Take Action to Combat Sea Level Challenges

Hampton Roads is experiencing challenges from the rising seas and flooding and we need YOUTH to create innovative solutions as we learn to adapt to the water and become resilient. The Elizabeth  River Project will showcase student’s projects addressing these issues at the Youth Resilience Expo. Students implement their resilient projects at school and in their community.  

Congratulations to all of our student participants for their hard work and dedication! The Youth Resilience Expo was featured in the Virginian-Pilot. Click Here to read the article

The second annual Elizabeth River Project's Youth Resilience Expo recently took place on February 29th, 2020 at the Norfolk Botanical Gardens.

Students choose investigative questions such as: 

  • How can our school capture and reuse rain water?
  • How can our school address flooding and/or reduce runoff pollution?
  • How do we encourage resilience action?
  • What can our school do to reduce our carbon footprint?

This year's keynote speaker was Jeremy Hoffman, the Chief Scientist at the Science Museum of Virginia. Hoffman will speak about urban heat islands and climate change impacts, on human and geological timescales

Want to learn more or get involved with this year's event?  Contact Sarah McBride, 757-399-7487 X218; Robin Dunbar, 757-399-7487 X220


Link to Youth Resilience Clearinghouse Resources


Highlights from Youth Resilience Expo 2019

Tom Clynes, a photojournalist contributor to National Geographic, congratulated the students as keynote speaker for the first annual Youth Resilience Expo. Clynes spoke about environmentalists around the world who have acted with audacity and said the more than 100 participating students had done so as well.

At Wilson High, students sold out twice in a project to sell solar phone chargers to students, parents friends and the community. At Maury, the students are working to install stations for filling water bottles to reduce litter in flood waters. And Waters Middle tested and determined the most effective solar oven, not only to reduce energy use but to help people be prepared to cook and boil water in disasters.    

“You are doing something here today that could help our Earth and our people… You created something here today that will bring joy to the lives of others,” the Hon. Mamie Johnson, Norfolk City Council, told the students. A member of Elizabeth River Project’s board, she served as co-mistress of ceremonies.

 All participating schools were recognized as Resilient River Star Schools by the Elizabeth River Project, with banners and awards funded by the Rotary Club of Norfolk. Additional funding for the Elizabeth River Project’s youth resilience education efforts comes from a NOAA Environmental Literacy Grant, the Dollar Tree Foundation and the Hampton Roads Community Foundation, which has just awarded new funding to continue the Expo for the next three years.