Help build a "Discovery Cart" for the Botanical Garden!
We have a new stretch goal of $7,000! Help us add more features to the Discovery Cart including hands-on science equipment, a better shade structure, and more!
The UC Botanical Garden is among the most botanically diverse landscapes in the world. The research-based collection of over 10,000 taxa is also a 'living museum' and a major attraction for the public and school groups. The Garden's 80+ Docents receive hundreds of hours of training in order to be expert interpreters on docent-led tours. However, most of the public comes into the Garden not on tours, but on a drop-in basis as a general visitor, with the most diverse audience coming on our monthly Free Admission day. Our goal with this campaign is to create a mobile Discovery Cart that will reveal to visitors of all ages and backgrounds the wonder, diversity and importance of the botanical world.
The proposed Discovery Station Cart will be the locus for public interpretation, offering interactive materials--such as seed pods, living and dried plant specimens, garden animals, and items made from plants--to engage visitors with hands-on exploration of such topics as patterns in nature, pollination and seed dispersal, food, fiber and dye plants, and the evolution of plant diversity. Our goal is to build a platform for visitors to engage with docents and these materials on a personal level toward advancing the visitor's understanding and appreciation of the plant world. By doing this, we aim to also increase the visitor's future sense of stewardship for nature and conservation.
How You Can Help
We hope to raise $5,000 to cover the cost of designing, materials, and building of the mobile Discovery Cart. With a fun, inviting presence, the Discovery Cart will house natural materials, provide shelter from sun, and offer multiple surfaces to conduct hands-on investigations. By being mobile, it will allow Docents the flexibility to move to various plants and locales in the collection.
Building on the success of our current discovery stations, we anticipate over 2,000 visitors will benefit from our Discovery Cart program in the first year, with that number growing as the program continues.
Please contribute whatever you can to help us make this Discovery Cart a reality. Your support will create a special place for all Garden visitors to see plants with new eyes, through the lens of the Discovery Cart experience!