The vision of Project Underground is that people will make wise, informed, choices as they manage cave, karst and groundwater resources to protect the underground ecosystems for the health of current and future generations. To accomplish this vision, Project Underground serves to build the necessary awareness and responsible attitudes towards cave, karst and groundwater resources and their management needs among the general public through educational and interpretive programs.
This series of cave and karst lessons teaches the importance of protecting and preserving these special environments. Since 1996, Project Underground has been a part of introducing geology, biology, and history of caves and the importance of their protection. Since every continent on Earth has caves, it is important to share this knowledge for proper stewardship of these areas. Caves are an important resource for all residents of the world. Not only do they contain beautiful underground features and unique wildlife habitats, this resource may also hold the key to the health of an entire town or city by its links to drinking water.
Project Underground was created by environmental educators and cavers coming together to research ideas and develop the activities. The activities have been designed and field tested by indoor and outdoor educators and reviewed to best meet the expressed needs of educators. It is with sincere hope that educators will gain an appreciation for these resources as they teach others on their importance.
More about Project Underground
Project Underground is the result of the hard work of countless educators with a passion for teaching the importance of caves including their geology, biology, and history. The curriculum began in the cave regions of Virginia, with a group of educators wanting to teach the importance of the cave resources for which they cared deeply. The Richmond Area Speleological Society, Cave Conservancy of the Virginias, National Speleological Society, and National Speleological Foundation were all supporters of the curriculum when it was first introduced in 1996. It has seen various editions with updated materials and activities throughout the years.
In 2019, Southeastern Cave Conservancy, Inc. was selected by the Project Underground organization to carry on the exceptional tradition of cave education upon the retirement of National Coordinator and Managing Editor Carol Zokaites. It has since been updated to a fifth edition to include national science standards.
Project Underground activity books are distributed through attending a professional development workshop taught by a Project Underground facilitator. Most Project Underground curriculum materials (printed or electronic) are only available by participating in a professional development workshop.