HANCOCK CO., Miss. (WLOX) - A Hancock County production company is getting national recognition.
Friday, the Environmental Protection Agency recognized Bayou Town Productions for the work they do to teach kids how to keep the Gulf clean and healthy by awarding them with the Gulf Guardian Award for environmental youth education.
“It’s very humbling because this is our job. This is what we do. We don’t think of ourselves as anything more or less than anyone else," said Cherie Schadler. "We’re just doing our job. It’s weird to be recognized for that; I mean, who normally gets recognized on their job? It’s a huge honor and a privilege and I hope that we can live up to it.”
The family-owned company has been producing environmental educational programs for students since 1993. Schadler and her family have performed for more than 180,000 students across Mississippi.
“The two things that we’re trying to attempt to do here with our programs is first, try to get them to understand their value to the community, and secondly, how to think about what they’re doing and how it impacts their community," Schadler said.
“They got engaged. They sang, and they answered questions. And then she touched on topics that’s relative to their backyard, watersheds in their backyard, so the kids could relate to that," said Lakeshia Robertson with the Environmental Protection Agency.
The mobile classroom is funded by the Mississippi Department of Environmental Quality.
“It’s a great education tool, one of the best we have,” said Coen Perrott, Environmental Administrator with MDEQ. “This program provides a great opportunity to know what you should do in your watershed because we all live in watersheds, and so it’s very entertaining for the children.”
That entertaining program comes with one big message.
“I just want to encourage all of our students out there to do their part and do that small thing that’ll make a big difference. Don’t litter. Recycle," Schadler said.
Bayou Town Productions also plans to start making videos online for teachers to use in the classroom.