Network hosts tours of local nonprofits

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The Nonprofit Network Southwest Washington is continuing the Community Cares tours it began in 2011 and expanded in 2012. The tours draw attention to community issues and show what local nonprofit agencies are doing to make a difference, the network said.

"People want to make informed decisions about what they get involved with and give their time or money to," Jeanne Kojis, executive director of the Nonprofit Network, told The Columbian in 2012. "Doing these tours … gives people a big picture as to what's happening in our community around issue areas."

The Green Tour and the Early Learning Tour are the next tours available. Each tour is $40 per person and begins with an introductory talk, followed by a visit to local agencies in a small biodiesel bus.

• The Green Tour, which focuses on environmental challenges, will be from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Thursday. It begins at Columbia Springs Environmental Education Center, 12208 S.E. Evergreen Highway, stopping at Friends of the Ridgefield National Wildlife Refuge, The Parks Foundation of Clark County and the Vancouver Watersheds Alliance before returning to Columbia Springs.

• The Early Learning Tour will emphasize the education and protection of young children. It's set for the morning of Oct. 15 — a specific time isn't set yet — and will include a visit to Support for Early Learning and Families, Innovative Services NW, Educational Opportunities for Children & Families, the Cardinal Preschool Naturescape at St. Joseph Catholic School and the Vancouver School District Foundation.

Registration is required for each tour. For more information and to enroll, visit http://nonprofitnetworkwa.org.