Fawnskin, CA, March 26, 2012, noon – Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack has announced the USDA’s continuing commitment to get kids outdoors and connected to the natural world around them with $1 million in cost-share funding from the US Forest Service to enhance children’s programs in 18 states. Some of the Forest Service grant funding will be distributed to the agency’s More Kids in the Woods and Children’s Forests program which includes activities and programs designed to spark curiosity about nature and promote learning. One of the More Kids in the Woods grants is $25,000 awarded to the Big Bear Discovery Center’s Nature Explore Classroom. The project will engage underserved youth of non-traditional and diverse backgrounds. Workshops will be designed through a partnership with the San Bernardino National Forest Association. Once implemented, the classroom will provide formal environmental education programs for 2,000 students and reach up to 250,000 visitors annually.