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Charlotte, NC – Mecklenburg County Park and Recreation projects are getting a financial boost thanks to a partnership with the Arts & Science Council (ASC) and a $15,000 challenge grant from Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina (BCBSNC).

The grant will match, dollar-for-dollar, Park and Recreation projects on, a fundraising platform and project of ASC. The projects are presented by Partners for Parks, a non-profit organization that promotes and enhances parks, greenways, open space and recreation in neighborhoods throughout Mecklenburg County and the surrounding region.

“This grant is unique to the Charlotte area and will provide amazing outdoor opportunities youth would not otherwise receive,” said Anthony Shaheen, outdoor recreation specialist at Park and Rec’s McDowell Nature Center.

The match supports the following four projects:
  • Adventure Camp Scholarship Fund providing unique ways for youth from low-income households to become engaged with the outdoors;
  • Upfitting of McDowell Greenhouse providing Charlotte youth the opportunity to grow food crops for consumption;
  • After-School Outdoor Clubs providing 120 youth activities that help young people develop curiosity in the outdoors and learn about their connection to the natural world;
  • Environmental Education Scholarship Fund serving 330 at-risk elementary and middle school students with hands-on environmental education experiences.
Launched August 29, 2011, is a project of the Arts & Science Council (ASC) that provides non-profit organizations a way to raise dollars for projects in Charlotte-Mecklenburg. Projects are posted on the site and individuals and corporations donate directly to projects they are passionate about. The site has funded more than 100 projects, generated 1,258 donations and raised more than $250,000.