GASP-Birmingham (that’s us!) is seeking Jefferson County, Ala., students in grades 9, 10, and 11 interested in becoming environmental game-changers. If that sounds like you or someone you know, we invite you to apply today for an innovative new program called Fresh Voices for Clean Air.
For the third year, GASP-Birmingham is partnering with Group Against Smog and Pollution (GASP-Pittsburgh), a non-profit organization working for a healthy, sustainable environment. Founded in 1969, GASP-Pittsburgh has been a diligent watchdog, educator, litigator, and policy-maker on many environmental issues, with a focus on air quality in the Pittsburgh region.
“Like us, they strive to reduce air pollution, educate the public on the health risks associated with poor air quality, and encourage community leaders to serve as role models for clean air and clean energy development,” GASP-Pittsburgh Executive Director Patrick Campbell said. “We’re excited for the opportunity to partner with our friends in Birmingham and can’t wait to see what the students come up with this time.”
Interested? Here’s how Fresh Voices for Clean Air works:
The two GASP groups will pair a small group of high school students in Jefferson County, Ala., with a group of their peers in Allegheny County, Pa., for a school year-long collaborative partnership. Throughout 2023-24, the cohorts in each city will meet virtually to participate in discussions with both each other and guest speakers. The team will learn more about air quality while building the skills necessary to become effective environmental advocates. This year, Fresh Voices will be partnering closely with Communitopia’s Pittsburgh Youth for Climate Action (PYCA).
By the end of the program year, the team will have created, developed, and executed an air quality-related project of their own choosing, with the support of adult mentors in both Pittsburgh and Birmingham. And that’s not all! Upon successful completion of the program year, participants will earn a $100 award.
GASP-Pittsburgh Air Quality Educator Laura Kuster said she was impressed by last year’s participants not only for their great work but their passion for and commitment to environmental advocacy.
“The students loved hearing from a wide variety of guest speakers, and those speakers valued interacting with the students even more,” GASP educator Laura Kuster said. “It’s inspiring to engage in conversations about air quality and the environment with our Fresh Voices participants, and I often think back to their perspectives and insights while doing my work.”
The program will run through the 2023-24 academic year and is open to students in grades 9, 10, and 11 who attend school in either Allegheny County or Jefferson County, Ala. Students must be willing and able to participate in Fresh Voices for Clean Air until the end of the school year in May 2024 to be considered. Participants will need access to a laptop or desktop computer, tablet, or smartphone to take part in virtual meetings, as well as written consent from a parent or guardian.
The deadline to apply is Monday, Sept. 25. You can apply here.
GASP-Pittsburgh is a nonprofit citizens’ group in Southwestern PA working for a healthy, sustainable environment. Founded in 1969, GASP has been a diligent watchdog, educator, litigator, and policy-maker on environmental issues, with a focus on air quality in the Pittsburgh region. gasp-pgh.org
GASP-Birmingham is a nonprofit advocacy organization working to advance healthy air & environmental justice in the greater-Birmingham area through education, advocacy, and collaboration. We strive to reduce air pollution, to educate the public on the health risks associated with poor air quality and to encourage community leaders to serve as role models for clean air and clean energy development. gaspgroup.org
The two organizations are not related to one another. We’re just fans of each other’s work and share an awesome name!