The Surfrider Foundation: Protecting Oceans, Waves and Beaches since 1984

Sign Up For Our bi-weekly SOUP Newsletter!
Volunteers needed: 10

Project: Clean Water

Matilija Schoolyard Habitat and OFG

Project Description

This project was initiated by Renee Roth, an OFG activist with the Ventura County Surfrider Chapter. Renee learned of the U.S. Department of Fish and Wildlife’s Schoolyard Habitat Program (SYH). SYH offers technical assistance and funding to non-profits working to create school gardens that provide wildlife habitat and an outdoor classroom. Ojai Unified School District Green Schools Committee had been searching for strategies to increase student participation in environmental education and outdoor learning.

Concrete Goals

The project is being phased in, and will eventually transform 2/3rd of an acre.

Specific Plan

Through the project, students observe, explore, and learn while restoring natural habitat for wildlife and contributing to protecting our watersheds. Directing rainwater from nearby buildings into the garden and creating contours on the site reduces the need for irrigating with local or imported drinking water and prevents runoff – important objectives of the Ocean Friendly Gardens Program. On February 3rd and 4th, 2011, over 200 native plants were installed onto the SYH site. Students are hand watering until they can install the drip irrigation system.

Project Leaders

Renee has become a resource for her community to help educate and train others, and she is also working as a Regional Organizer for G3/The Green Gardens Group, an OFG partner.

Promotion & Documentation

Website –
Facebook -