Mandi Billinge, an elementary school teacher and a biologist, founded KIDS for the BAY in California in 1992. Mandi first began teaching in a school in inner-city London, where she and her elementary school students established a nature area and pond on the school grounds as well as a school wide recycling program. Mandi worked tirelessly to improve the science curriculum and motivate the students and teachers to try hands-on environmental science. She eventually moved to the United States and began teaching in local schools. Realizing the need to improve science and environmental education here and abroad, especially for students in under-resourced schools who would not otherwise have these opportunities, Mandi took action.

She created KIDS for the BAY to turn children on to science and inspire them to become environmentalists. It was not long before she began transforming classrooms and natural habitats into living laboratories for learning. Mandi’s philosophy of education through action helps students to believe that they can make a difference and change their environment.

With a dedicated staff, Mandi has expanded her vision to inspire a love of learning and change the environment, one school neighborhood at a time, to thousands of elementary school students, teachers and parents throughout the East San Francisco Bay Area.