A Great Year in 2015!
Last year was a great year for the National Park Foundation and our national parks!
Through our grants, we helped protect America’s national treasures, we were able to connect new audiences to these incredible places, and we created opportunities to inspire the next generation of national park supporters. Check out some examples of the great work we did last year!
At Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area, we are helping protect the Cheeseboro Canyon Trail, one of the park’s most visited sites.
Cherished by the local community, the trail is unfortunately not accessible to everyone, including those with mobility challenges. With support from NPF and other donors, the park is working to construct a fully accessible trailhead to support 1.1 miles of universal trail and an accessible parking area, bus drop-off, and walkways to connect this beloved trail to more Americans.
Transportation is one of the biggest barriers to connecting kids to our national parks. NPF is providing $801,488 in transportation grants to 113 parks to reach an estimated 135,000 kids to eliminate the cost of transportation and get kids outdoors.
Obed Wild and Scenic River was one of the parks that received a grant to bring urban kids from the Boys & Girls club in Knoxville, TN to the park for an unforgettable day of hiking and rock climbing.
Located about an hour from Knoxville, the majority of the students (and chaperones) had never been to the park before. Kids participated in a guided hike with two park rangers and learned about the different species of animals, insects, and plants that live and grow in the park.
They also went rock climbing, which none of the children had ever done before. Although a few were anxious at first, by the end of the day the kids were clamoring to climb again and didn’t want to leave the park.
We also supported 21st Century Conservation Corps at several parks in the summer of 2015. Programs like the corps give youth the opportunity to help with conservation and restoration efforts at parks while gaining valuable training and work experience, including learning specialized skills, and inspire them to be steward of our national parks.
At Wupatki National Monument, local conservation crews re-built 250 feet of the Citadel Trail to make it accessible. The crew also worked with resource staff at the park to patrol a fence line and remove invasive species.
We are proud of what we accomplished in 2015 and we’re so excited for all the great things we will support in 2016 as we celebrate the National Park Service Centennial. Help us make this a celebration worthy of welcoming a second century for our national parks!