WV Department of Environmental Protection
Office of Environmental Advocate
601 57th Street SE
Charleston, WV 25304
Phone: (304) 926-0499
Fax: (304) 957-0338
In-person events canceled for 2021
The West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection has canceled April's Earth Day celebration at the Clay Center in Charleston; May's Youth Environmental Day at North Bend State Park; and June's State Junior Conservation Camp at Cedar Lakes. We hope to return to a normal schedule in 2022.
Virtual Junior Conservation Camp set for June 24-25
Interested in learning more about mountain biking? Do you know how to safely build a campfire? Are you curious about fireflies or butterflies? Those are just a sampling of the topics to be covered in the 41st annual State Junior Conservation Camp. This year's camp -- geared toward 11- to 14-year-olds but open to anyone -- will be held virtually on June 24-25 with live, interactive presentations from 8:30 a.m. until 2 p.m. Here is where you register for the free camp.
What Is It?
The West Virginia Youth Environmental Program was established in 1963 under the Division of Natural Resources as the West Virginia Youth Conservation Program. Its mission has not changed over the years: To provide a challenge and an opportunity to the youth of our state to participate in environmental projects within their communities.
The program is sponsored by the DEP. It is designed to unite existing youth groups such as 4-H clubs, scouts, kindergarten, elementary, junior high/middle and high schools, FFA chapters, church youth fellowships, and others toward the common goal of Making West Virginia Shine! The program provides incentive to the groups to actively participate in environmental projects such as litter cleanups, recycling drives and tree plantings. It creates an interest and enthusiasm for preserving our natural resources, with more than $15,000 in cash and other awards including a college scholarship.
How To Become Involved
Youth groups can become involved in the West Virginia Youth Environmental Program by simply enrolling at any time (see Enroll button above). There is no obligation and no cost. Each group that enrolls receives informative materials, including an official certificate of enrollment, lists of available awards, the award sponsors, project ideas, and criteria for reporting.
Youth groups enrolled in the program must submit a report of their projects to become eligible for more than $15,000 in awards. Projects are to be completed from March 16 of the current year through March 15 of the next year. These reports are judged and the winning youth groups are presented their awards at the Annual Youth Environmental Day. This event is held the third Saturday in May at North Bend State Park, Cairo, West Virginia. Individual awards are also available. You can read more information here about YEP and its award programs.