The Fairfax County Park Foundation recently presented Northrop Grumman representatives with a 2021 award for Distinguished Private-Sector Service from the Virginia Recreational & Park Society, saluting its efforts connecting local students to the environment.
Northrop Grumman was named a winner on Oct. 26 at the state organization’s annual conference, held in Harrisonburg.
Since 2001, Northrop Grumman has provided more than $169,000 to support environmental education in Fairfax County parks. Much of the funding supported the Meaningful Watershed Environmental Education programs at Hidden Oaks Nature Center, which engage fourth- and seventh-grade students in hands-on, educational field trips focusing on the importance of the Chesapeake Bay watershed.
In 2020, when COVID shuttered schools and parks, the aerospace and defense company allowed Hidden Oaks to modify its in-person, hands-on MWEE field trips and use the $10,000 donation to provide online programming to students in county elementary and middle schools.
The videos, in English and Spanish, taught students about oceans, stream monitoring, phases of the moon, turtles and other environmental topics.
The Virginia Recreational & Park Society is a private, nonprofit professional organization founded in 1953. Its purpose is to unite all professionals, students and interested lay persons engaged in the field of recreation, parks and other leisure services in Virginia into one body. The Fairfax County Parks Foundation serves as the fund-raising arm to help the Fairfax County Park Authority.