Students’ Art Raises Awareness of Pollinator Conservation

Artwork by Nadia GuedhamiYouth poster contest winners announced; People’s Choice vote open to residents

(Richland PIO) – Seventeen local students will receive awards in the Youth Conservation Poster Contest sponsored by the Richland Soil and Water Conservation District (SWCD).

The poster topic, “Where Would We BEE Without Pollinators,” challenged students to imagine a world without pollinating animals and to raise awareness about their conservation and protection.

Artwork by Sara GuedhamiPollinators such as bees, butterflies, beetles, birds and bats play a key role in the life cycle of many flowering plants. By carrying pollen from flower to flower, pollinators enable plants to produce seeds. In turn, these seeds allow for new generations of plants to grow. Humans and animals alike depend on these plants for survival.

In their posters, students addressed potential threats to pollinators, including habitat loss and disease, and explored ways humans can create specialized habitats and reduce the use of harmful pesticides to protect pollinators.

Artwork by Ella Catherine GillamMore than 40 students completed and submitted entries virtually, and nearly 2,000 students learned about the contest through interactive presentations conducted in Richland County classrooms in late 2019 and early 2020. Winners will receive cash prizes, and four entries will progress to a state competition sponsored by the S.C. Association of Conservation Districts.

The Richland SWCD is asking for residents’ help with one final recognition: the 2020 People’s Choice Award. A selection of poster entries is up on the Richland SWCD’s Facebook page, and the public is asked to “like” their favorite entries.

Voting runs through Sunday, June 7. The poster with the most likes will earn the People’s Choice honor and will receive an additional cash prize.

The Conservation Poster Contest is an annual education program hosted by the Richland SWCD with support from the state and national Associations of Conservation Districts. For more information, reach Chanda Cooper at cooper.chanda@richlandcountysc.gov.

Contest winners include:

Kindergarten-First Grade

First place: Nadia Guedhami, kindergarten, Center for Knowledge
Second place: James Harris Hudson, first grade, Brockman Elementary
Third place: Reet Modgill, first grade, A.C. Moore Elementary
Honorable mention: Layla Hoyt Parrish, kindergarten, Cutler Jewish Day School

Second-Third Grades

First place: Sofia Ananyan, second grade, Harmony School
Second place: Maya Rekleitis, third grade, Harmony School
Third place: Zoey Sangal, second grade, Center for Knowledge
Honorable mention: Sophia Hudson, third grade, Brockman Elementary

Fourth-Sixth Grades

First place: Sara Guedhami, fourth grade, Center for Knowledge
Second place: Brooklynn Kim, sixth grade, Longleaf Middle; Sarah Becker, sixth grade, Blythewood Middle
Third place: Alex Manuel, sixth grade, E.L. Wright Middle; Rachel Schoeman, fifth grade, Cutler Jewish Day School
Honorable mention: William Jacob Davis Cauthen, fourth grade, Bethel-Hanberry Elementary

Seventh-Ninth Grades

First place: Ella Catherine Gillam, seventh grade, Longleaf Middle
Second place: Leia Taylor, seventh grade, Longleaf Middle
Third place: Samaiya Days, eighth grade, Longleaf Middle

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