American Water Foundation provides $250K grant to support solar-electric education vessel

Utility partners with Upstream Alliance to help improve access to environmental education in Camden

The American Water Charitable Foundation together with New Jersey American Water recently awarded a $250,000 Water and Environment grant to Upstream Alliance to support a solar-electric education vessel. The vessel will serve as a floating classroom, providing on-water education experiences for underserved students in the city of Camden and beyond.

“The American Water Charitable Foundation said it is pleased to partner with Upstream Alliance to support environmental education to youth in Camden,” Carrie Williams, president, American Water Charitable Foundation, said. “The 2023 Water and Environment grant will help thousands of students have the opportunity to explore the Delaware River and its diverse ecosystems, as well as learn about the vital role the river plays in providing clean drinking water to millions.”

Upstream Alliance is dedicated to connecting people to nature, by providing on-the-water experiences for conservation leaders who can improve public access, clean water and coastal resilience.

“The American Water Charitable Foundation’s support is critical to getting every student in Camden on the water three times before they graduate. This will be a game-changer for the students, schools and waterways,” Don Baugh, president, Upstream Alliance, said. “We are grateful to the American Water Charitable Foundation and New Jersey American Water for their continued support and dedication to environmental education and the local community.”

The Water and Environment grant is part of the Keep Communities Flowing Grant Program, focusing on three pillars of giving: water, people and communities. Water and Environment grants support high-impact projects and programs focused on clean water, conservation, environmental education and water-based recreation. In 2023, the foundation awarded a combined total of $1 million to 23 organizations in 11 states, supporting communities served by American Water.

“New Jersey American Water is thrilled to partner with the American Water Charitable Foundation in selecting an organization that supports and prioritizes environmental education in Camden,” Mark McDonough, president of New Jersey American Water & American Water Charitable Foundation board member, said. “Our joint efforts will empower the next generation of environmental leaders and we look forward to continuing to make a lasting impact in the community.”

Additionally in 2022, the American Water Charitable Foundation and New Jersey American Water awarded a combined contribution of $40,000 to Upstream Alliance to support Camden County youth in the Search for the Cooper River Expedition. Upstream Alliance was able to send a diverse group of students on a six-day expedition, led by Camden County Parks Director Maggie McCann Johns and National Geographic science photographer Anand Varma, to explore the length of the Cooper River.