In 2017, one of my goals is to donate $20.17 each month to a different charity or cause that I’m passionate about. I’ll still feature other nonprofits and social enterprises in the Give Back section, but I wanted to share this challenge with you, as well. I hope I can introduce you to some great organizations and maybe even inspire you to join me in this monthly challenge!
The National Parks Foundation
Now more than ever, our National Parks are in danger of losing their protected status for the land and animals within the parks, and they are also in danger from environmental changes that affect the ecosystems that these National Parks protect.
“The National Park Service preserves unimpaired the natural and cultural resources and values of the National Park System for the enjoyment, education, and inspiration of this and future generations. The Park Service cooperates with partners to extend the benefits of natural and cultural resource conservation and outdoor recreation throughout this country and the world.”
When I went to the Smoky Mountains National Park, I saw firsthand the wonder that is a national park and also the educational value they hold.
- Over 275 million visitors visit the 417 National Parks and areas each year
- The National Parks cover 84 million acres combined
- The National Park Service also oversees places such as Golden Gate National Recreational Area, the Lincoln Memorial and Blue Ridge Parkway
There are multitudes of programs that are supported by the National Parks, but all aim to protect, connect and inspire. Here are a few!
- America’s Best Idea engages underserved and diverse communities to the parks through environmental projects, outdoor adventures and historical trips.
- Native Youth and Conservation connects Native American youth to their parks by forming a partnership with the Native population and the National Park Service to protect the lands and sustain the community.
- Transportation Scholars utilize emerging professionals in engineering to make the parks more accessible, while also conserving the natural beauty and creating as little disruption to wildlife as possible.
- Understanding Climate Change provides training for science educators so that they can teach climate change through hands-on lessons in national parks.
You can access a more exhaustive list here.
To learn more about the National Park Service or to find a park, check out their website. You can donate to the National Park Foundation here. Follow the National Park Service on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram!
What’s the best National Park you’ve been to?