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Conservation: Pass It Down

Conservation Pass It DownResearch shows today's youngsters are not getting sufficient exposure to outdoors and nature. Children often occupy themselves with indoor activities, and outside time is limited.  One day, the children of today will write policies and set trends. And what consideration will they give conservation if it is a foreign topic?  That's why NRCS Mississippi and its partners have developed the Conservation: Pass It Down campaign.  We want to give grandparents (and, of course, parents and mentors) ideas and activities to help young ones enjoy their time outside. This campaign will give you the resources you need.


Use these resources to engage your youngsters.

Welcome to Conservation: Pass It Down

Bee Pollen Popular

Celebrate Agriculture

Conservation Trees

Everyday is Earth Day

Hands on the Earth

I Dig 4 Dirt

Sam E. Soil (K-3)

Sam E. Soil (4-6)


This campaign revolves around a monthly electronic newsletter, which comes to your email inbox filled with tips, ideas and activities for enjoying the outdoors with your youngsters.  Sign up for this newsletter through GovDelivery or by contacting us.

Bridging the App

Each of our e-newsletters features an App of the Month. We include a smartphone, iPhone or iPad application as a way to bridge technology with the outdoors. Here are a few apps to check out: H2O Calc and Leafsnap.

History of Conservation: Pass It Down

NellHughes-CPIDHow did this all get started? It began with Nell Hughes, a believer in clean water and healthy soil and a mother, grandmother and great-grandmother. She was inspired with the concept of beginning a program to ensure that children and grandchildren have an opportunity to utilize and enjoy natural resources.

In 1996, she met with the Mississippi Soil and Water Conservation Commission and NRCS to ask about starting the “I’m a Conservation Grandparent” program.  This program was started the next year, launched at the Mississippi Association of Conservation District’s Annual Meeting in January 1997.

Nell recently approached MSWCC and NRCS again, wishing to see this program brought to life again. That's why NRCS Mississippi and partners are rolling out the Conservation: Pass It Down campaign. The campaign will use resources, like this newsletter, to help parents, grandparents and mentors get their children into nature. It's only fitting that this campaign, like it was in 1997, is launched at the MACD annual meeting this week.

Nell is a long-time conservationist. She supported her husband, who served as commissioner on the Simpson County Soil and Water Conservation District for more than 35 years. After his death, she was elected to the board, a position she has held for five years. She has also been a member of the MACD auxiliary, Mississippi Poultry Association and Mississippi Floral Association boards. She is an Earth Team member and received the National Association of Conservation Districts Distinguished Service Award.

She is the mother of two sons, one grandson and three granddaughters and two great granddaughters.  She lives on a 670-acre farm in rural Simpson County. Nell is dedicated to the cause of conservation, her personal life is guided by God, and she has a heart filled with understanding and compassion.

--  Nell Hughes, District Clerk, Simpson County Soil & Water Conservation District