River Rats Education Program

A Peacemaking Project by Rowan N.

What is the injustice we are solving?

In our Winchendon community there is a large problem of over pollution, which makes the pond in downtown Winchendon unusable. We hope to create a river education program for the youth in the local area to create an appreciation for the nature around them. If we can create an appreciation the population will become less prone to pollute.

Our Compassionate Solution:

To solve this injustice of pollution in the town of Winchendon
we will address the lack of environmental education program
by instituting our "River Rats Program" to educate the youth in the area to create an appreciation for nature.

Our Project Plan:


  • Create an appreciation of nature in the town of Winchendon, get the youth outside more.

We will increase my / our compassion by...

How will you show courage?

I will show courage by proposing my plan to the school board, and teaching a class of students about the world around them.

How will you collaborate with others?

I will collaborate with the schools in the town to get students involved, and then also the town of winchendon to get volunteers who want to help out with the program.

How will you know you are moving in the right direction? (What are specific ways you can measure your impact?)

If the program spreads and other towns and schools want to be apart of program to educate their students as well.

Key Steps

  • Plan out River Rats Curriculum, gather all supplies necessary, create a schedule, propose the curriculum to school board,


Fish S.
22 February 2018 15:50

Hi Rowan, thanks for sharing this. I'm sorry that there's such a high level of pollution in Winchendon -- it must be frustrating not to be able to use your pond. Sounds like the pollution is a serious injustice -- what are your thoughts on who causes it and why they behave this way?

I think an environmental education program sounds really exciting -- and we'd love to help you plan it and make it happen however we can. How can we help?

Kelsey T.
27 February 2018 13:53

Hi! I’m part of the Peace First team and wanted to provide you with Feedback for your Compassionate Insight. We provide insight feedback to help teams further strengthen their ideas as they head into the plan phase.

Your insight is very strong -- you've done a great job of identifying a key root cause of pollution -- lack of environmental education -- and I appreciate that you've come up with a concrete way of addressing that. This strikes me as a really powerful longer term solution to a complex problem in your community and I'm excited to see how the River Rats Program promotes a greater appreciation of nature and greater environmental protection in the community.

I'd love to hear a bit more about the curriculum you are planning -- maybe you could incorporate a few more details into your plan. Will the program include some education around how pollution impacts the local community?

One thing that could make your project even stronger is a bit more information about the injustice and its impact -- I agree that pollution is an injustice, but how could you articulate that to someone who doesn't understand? Who is the pollution impacting the most? How does the pollution of the river (and potentially also the air, etc.) impact people living in the area or people living elsewhere? What is it about having access to a clean pond and healthy nature that is so important? It would be interesting to incorporate some conversations about this into your program as well.

Excited about this project and look forward to hearing more. Keep up the good work!