With gratitude for the gracious memorial from her family, the Garden Club of Virginia established the Bessie Bocock Carter Conservation Award in 2009. The award's intent is to fund implementation of a conservation project that will serve as a catalyst for community action. It is a monetary award presented annually to a person, persons or club, or in concert with other Virginia conservation organizations, for either natural resource conservation or environmental protection within the Commonwealth.
The award makes possible implementation of specific, tangible projects that directly benefit natural resource conservation or environmental protection within the Commonwealth. In May of 2012, the award was given to the Northern Neck Land Conservancy for its work with the Cat Point Creek conservation project. To be considered for the award, the Land Conservancy was sponsored by the Garden Club of the Northern Neck and as such, has entered into a partnership to administer the funding.
The award has helped to support the joint efforts of the Garden Club of the Northern Neck and the NNLC engage the community in conservation efforts and land protection. The Northern Neck Land Conservancy created a social marketing campaign with the help of the award, and this campaign is now a community educational promotion of the Cat Point Creek watershed and the conservation values of protecting land on the Northern Neck of Virginia. Restaurant placemats were distributed May 2013 to restaurants who wished to support the Cat Point Creek initiative. Customers were able to read about why protecting the watershed is so important.
Also, in February 2014, students in Richmond County Intermediate School are going to learn about conservation of our natural resources, including information on the geography and natural habitat of the Cat Point Creek watershed. Members of the Northern Neck Land Conservancy staff and a Board member who is a retired educator, will be teaching a lesson to the sixth grade science classes. Instruction will be in compliance with the Virginia Standards of Learning for 6th grade science. Culminating the lesson will be a distribution of a student version of the Cat Point Creek placemat that students shall take home and share with their families. A challenging vocabulary puzzle on conservation terms is on the mat, as well as pertinent information about the watershed and habitat.
The NNLC is proud to be recognized for our commitment to preserving the environment and for our efforts to protect and maintain our natural resources. The Bessie Bocock Carter Conservation Award demonstrates an acknowledgement of this commitment and we are grateful for this support.