Patch Pals Education Campaign

Organization Information:

Organization Name:
Keep Austin Beautiful
City & State:
Organization Website:
Organization's Mission Statement
Keep Austin Beautiful’s (KAB) vision is to inspire and educate individuals and the Austin community towards greater environmental stewardship. KAB’s goal is to Clean, Beautify and Protect the Austin environment through physical improvements and hands-on education.

Submission Information

Impact Essay
Over the past 3 years Keep Austin Beautiful (KAB) have made youth education our top priority and built our entire education program from the ground up. Our youth education program has matured and become a valuable resource in the community. One of the programs that sprouted from this new commitment has been Patch Pals. Patch Pals engages youth to participate in an educational activity to raise their awareness about environmental topics; and to complete a cleanup and beautification project to earn a patch. To support youth and youth leaders in their efforts to earn a patch, KAB hosts workshops for youth, provides Patch Pals’ group leaders activity kits and activity booklets, and supplies groups with tools, and cleanup supplies. Patch Pals was slow to catch on and needed its own branding identity. Using our Tech Soup discount we purchased the Adobe Design Suite. We recruited an unpaid graphic design intern and then we let our imaginations go to work. After dozens of sketches a logo was developed with an accompanying postcard that captures an environmental theme geared towards youth taking action. The new logo was featured on our KAB website and the postcards were distributed through mailings to scout leaders and at local tabling events. It worked - the program grew exponentially! Originally designed for scouts and troops the program became popular among after-school groups and class teachers. As word got out the demand quickly became bigger than our small staff of four could meet. We needed a new creative approach to address the daily requests for educational presentations and assistance for service projects – an Activity Booklet. Activities in the Activity Booklet are carefully selected to offer a comprehensive view of litter abatement, waste reduction, ecology, water quality, native plants, and trees. Factoids compliment activities and Patch Challenges engage youth in everyday stewardship. The booklets were and are provided free to youth and educators. The results have been amazing: • In three years the number of youth participating in activity kit checkouts and KAB led presentations grew from 220 to 5400! • Over 2,500 Activity Booklets have been distributed to youth groups working towards a patch. • 498 youth have earned a patch by completing a cleanup, beautification project and participating in an environmental education activity. In addition to the number of youth reached KAB has witnessed youth participating in the Patch Pals program work cooperatively to become active stakeholders in the cleanup, restoration, and beautification of their surrounding environment. All the while the community has been and continues to be strengthened by meaningful partnerships between youth and their local resources. We owe much of the programs success to the succinct brand development and activity booklet that were accomplished utilizing the discounted Adobe software available through Tech Soup.
Submission Category
Environmental Impact Print/Photo