OUR STORY

Bringing Education to Life!

Timeline

2017
July 5

PLG Expansion

Learning Garden opens 10 new gardens in the LA Unified School District & launches in the UK in cooperation with Garden Organic & Seeds of Change.
June 29

Project Hero Pilot

Project Hero pilots in GA, CO, TX, and CA, as a project based learning tool and framework that connects kids to information about locally threatened species, and guides them on a Quest to uncover and implement solutions.  
2016
August 24

25th Anniversary & ecoSTEM

CPF celebrates its 25th anniversary as an organization, and launches a partnership with DonorsChoose.org making best practice hands-on science learning, citizen science, field investigations, and youth-led stewardship projects available through curated EcoSTEM Resource Kits in the subjects of: Pollinators, Renewable Energy, Soils & Decomposition and Water Stewardship.
2015
August 24

Celebration Series & 200 Gardens

In honor of the 25th Anniversary of the animated series, Captain Planet and the Planeteers, CPF hosts the Celebration Series – seven events in five cities (Atlanta, London, New York, Paris, and San Francisco). CPF installs its 200th Project Learning Garden school and adds a fifth (5) FoodCorps member to support the Garden-to-Cafeteria pilot program in partnership with Atlanta Public Schools, Sodexo, and Kaiser Permanente.
2014
August 24

Project Hero

CPF convenes a group of a dozen like-minded conservation and education foundations in Bozeman, MT to discuss a collaborative project to engage K-12 students and their natural empathy for endangered species in a solution-driven web platform to restore habitat loss and reverse biodiversity decline. Participants included: Defenders of Wildlife, E.O. Wilson Biodiversity Foundation, National Wildlife Federation, The Nature Conservancy, NatureServe, and the Turner Endangered Species Fund. From that meeting, Project..Read More
2013
August 24

SAGES & Millionth Student Impacted

Under an MOU with Georgia Department of Education, the CPF Education Leadership Center begins working with exemplary science teachers to develop SAGES (Science for All Generations Through Environmental Leadership) – a curriculum that uses the Framework for K-12 education to teach three-dimensional science using the environment as a context for relevant projects and assessments. In the late Fall, CPF directly funds its ONE MILLIONTH child in project-based environmental change-making. CPF..Read More
2012
August 24

New Team & Programs

CPF hires Leesa Carter-Jones as the new Executive Director and the team begins implementing its first operating program, Project Learning Garden in the Atlanta-metro region under the direction of Kyla Van Deusen. That same year, CPF begins building the Education Leadership Center, under the direction of Karan Wood, to begin sharing best practices, resources, and hands-on learning projects in environmental science to the K-12 educational community.
2011
August 24

1st Annual Captain Planet Foundation Gala

During the 20th year celebration, the annual Captain Planet Foundation Gala is born and the Board of Directors develops a new strategic vision for the Foundation. They instruct the staff to review the 20 years of grant-funded projects to determine if there are “best practice” programs and projects that the Foundation can operate to scalable model programs.
2007
August 24

CPF gets rights to show

CPF acquires the rights to exhibit previous episodes of Captain Planet and the Planeteers online and on-air, allowing this valuable resource to reach out and educate the children of today!
2003
August 24

Down to Earth Day Kids Fest

CPF launches its inaugural Down to Earth Day Kids Fest. In its first year, it brings together over 500 youth and their families to celebrate Earth Day by sampling some of the amazing activities that local environmental education partners have to offer the Atlanta community.
2001
August 24

Captain Planet Foundation becomes independent public nonprofit

In the face of a challenging merger with AOL, Time Warner decides to shut down the Captain Planet Foundation. Two of Atlanta’s most dedicated environmental activists, Laura Turner Seydel, the daughter of Ted Turner, and her husband Rutherford were so impassioned by the grassroots efforts of the Foundation to educate and empower youth that they saved the day by working with Time Warner to orchestrate the transition of the corporate..Read More
1996
August 24

Final season of Captain Planet & Planeteers airs

After six years of inspiring eco-adventures, Captain Planet and the Planeteers airs its final season. Throughout its original run, the series received multiple Emmy Nominations, Environmental Media Awards, Parents’ Choice, and Genesis Awards, proving that education doesn’t have to come at the expense of entertainment. Captain Planet and the Planeteers’ legacy continues today in a worldwide movement of youth whose lives were inspired by its message.
1991
August 24

Captain Planet Foundation is established

The Captain Planet Foundation (CPF) is born when series Producer Barbara Pyle negotiates a percentage of the show’s merchandising revenue to empower young people, putting Captain Planet’s message of environmental stewardship and teamwork into practice. Schools and organizations around the world present their environmental projects to the Foundation and receive seed money to grow their ideas. The CPF receives hundreds of proposals annually to empower young people to become Planeteers..Read More
1990
August 24

Show launches

Captain Planet and the Planeteers launches to worldwide acclaim. The 113-episode series rockets to the top of the charts as the world’s first ever edutainment ‘eco-toon.’ Syndicated in over 220 U.S. markets and in over 100 countries worldwide, it consistently ranks No. 1 in Nielsen ratings.
1989
August 24

Inspiration for Captain Planet and the Planeteers

“We need a super hero for the Earth. Let’s call him Captain Planet,” exclaims Ted Turner. The animated television series Captain Planet and the Planeteers is conceived by Ted Turner and Barbara Pyle together. This historic and award-winning program is developed and produced by Barbara Pyle and her team, Nick Boxer and Thom Beers, in partnership with DIC Enterprises.
captain planet and the planeteers

Captain Planet & the Planeteers

Captain Planet & the Planeteers was a cartoon show produced by Ted Turner & Barbara Pyle and which aired from 1990-1996. In the show, Gaia, the spirit of the planet, assembles a team of five young “planeteers” from nations around the world, who can summon Captain Planet to help them solve ecological and other global problems “by their powers combined.” The show was widely acclaimed for its treatment difficult issues such as pollution, poaching, deforestation, as well as more social issues including drug addiction, HIV/ AIDS, and bullying in a way that educated, entertained, but also activated its young audience. Though it has been off the air for more than two decades, Captain Planet lives on in the minds of many real-world “Planeteers” as a symbol of becoming a superhero for planet Earth.

The Captain Planet Foundation was first established as a corporate foundation to support youth-led efforts inspired by the show. The organization became an independent nonprofit organization in 2001.

Show Mythology

In the original mythology of the show as imagined by Pyle, Captain Planet was intended to represent more of a metaphor of what is possible when kids work together to solve problems. The show wasn’t about calling up a savior. It was about empowering children to use their own abilities.

Characters

Captain Planet
Captain Planet

Captain Planet (voiced by David Coburn) is the title characterof the series. In the beginning of the series, Gaia assembles a modern-day team of “Planeteers” from several nations. When the modern-day Planeteers combine their powers to summon the elemental warrior, this incarnation takes on the appearance of a superhero, who takes on the superhero-like name of “Captain Planet.” Captain Planet displays a wry sense of humor and often uses puns while taunting the show’s cast of villains. His only weakness is when he comes into contact with sources of pollution.

Gaia
Gaia

The beautiful spirit of Earth, Gaia is the protector of the planet. She feels anguish whenever damage is done to the world, its seas, its atmosphere, or to any living creature. When damage occurs, Gaia spurs the Planeteers into action– kind of an “Eco-Alert Early Warning System.”

The archetypal Earth mother, gaia is a source of wisdom and advice for both Captain Planet and the Planeteers. She helps the identify environmental problems via a series of crystalline screens located on her home base, Hope Island. These “monitors” track the events of the present and can predict their outcome if left unchecked. But no matter what happens, Gaia loves Earth’s children unconditionally. Though sorrow by what they’ve done and worried about the future, she is eternally hopeful that all will turn out for the best.

Kwame
Kwame

This 16-year-old conservationist does everything in his power to save the world’s endangered species. Raised by elders in a remote African village, Kwame is somewhat naive– often with comic results, Quiet but firm, he has the greatest integrity of any of the Planeteers. But his naive idealism, combined with his convictions, sometimes leave him disillusioned with human nature.

With his green thumb, Kwame can grow anything. Though fundamentally serious, he has an impish sense of humor, and can often deliver off-the-wall comments perfectly deadpan. His earthy wisdom provides a firm foundation for the Planeteers.

Kwame’s element is EARTH. He can create small, localized earthquakes, moves rocks, causes holes or furrows to appear in the dirt, and turn mud to solid ground.

Gi
Gi

This 15-year-old Asian girl is a mixture of refined culture and high-tech, high style. She’s a rock’n’roll fan who’s a natural linguist. Bright, sophisticated, stylish, and trendy, Gi is the most flexible Planeteer. Among her companions, she often assumes the leadership role. Although Gi can be impetuous, she’s usually a team player.

Gi’s also an athlete– her favorite sport is surfing– and a student of marine biology. She has a strong scientific understanding of the various ocean ecosystems. At home with the sea and any of its creatures, Gi has a particular fondness for dolphins. She has even learned how to communicate with them.

Gi’s element is WATER. She can control any water source and make it do her bidding.

Linka
Linka

A hardworking, far-too-serious 16-year-old who’s straight from eastern Europe, Linka’s the most conservative Planeteer. Her idea of a good time is to curl up with the latest issue of “Advanced Ecology.: Hot tempered and feisty, she is nevertheless a master of logical deduction. She even tends to over-analyze things. Her analytical approach to problem-solving sometimes annoys her other teammates– especially Wheeler. Sparks fly when he and Linka are together. But in spite of their differences, the two teammates genuinely care for each other.

Quick of thought, Linka’s elementis WIND. She can command it to swirl or gust, or create small tornadoes.

Wheeler
Wheeler

This tough, street-wise 17-year-old grew up on the mean streets of Brooklyn. There, he learned to think fast- but act faster. The oldest Planeteer, Wheeler is also the most impulsive, and he frequently acts without thinking. As a result, he’s prone to making mistakes. Wheeler’s biggest challenge is to become more sensitive to others and to learn that the end doesn’t justify the means. Always ready with a glib remark, he sometimes speaks up at inopportune times.  Wheeler me be impetuous, but he has a good heart, and in the end, he usually makes things right.

Wheeler’s element is FIRE. He can create and direct small fires or beams of flame.

Ma-Ti
Ma-Ti

This 13-year-old South American may be the youngest Planeteer, but he often seems wisest. Raised by Kayapo Indians, Ma-Ti can survive in the wildest jungle. He’s no stranger to the big city either, and he knows a lot about the world outside the Amazon basin. Although he’s had little formal education, Ma-Ti has an intuitive grasp of ecological principles. And he’s willing to give of himself for the benefit of the whole.

The essence of caring and concern, Ma-Ti serves as the Planeteers’ emotional link to the Earth and humankind. He’s also the closest of the group to Gaia, and tries to keep the Planeteers focused on the spirit of her teachings. Ma-Ti often acts as a cohesive force, working to promote Planeteer unity.

Ma-Ti’s element is HEART, which enables him to communicate telepathically with other Planeteers and with Gaia. He can also communicate with animals, and his empathetic abilities allow him to feel emotions that provide valuable clues during the Planeteers adventures.

Episodes

In 1990 Captain Planet and the Planeteers launches to worldwide acclaim. The 113-episode series rockets to the top of the charts as the world’s first ever edutainment ‘eco-toon.’ Syndicated in over 220 U.S. markets and in over 100 countries worldwide, it consistently ranks No. 1 in Nielsen ratings.

A Hero For Earth / Season 1, Episode 15

Gaia, the spirit of the Earth, summons four teenagers and a young boy named Ma-Ti from five different corners of the world to help her in the battle to save the planet. For their first assignment, the Planeteers battle Hoggish Greedly, whose oil rig operation is jeopardizing the coastline.