Because of growing civil unrest in 2020, I joined a coalition of fellow park enthusiasts. Our group brainstormed ideas about how we could use our combined platforms to help. We’ve previously written about the barriers many BIPOC communities face when it comes to outdoor recreation. Statistics show that Black Americans make up only 7% of national park visitors (some studies show that it’s as low as 1%) while making up 13% of the U.S. population.
Each month, our group spotlights a relevant organization. These organizations are working to bridge the gap between outdoor spaces and underrepresented communities. Past features include:
- August: Black in National Parks Week
- September: Soul Trak
- October: Charles Roundtree
- November: Youth Opportunities Program
- December: Black Kids Adventures
- January: The Memorial Foundation
- February: Syatt
- March: Love Is King
- June: The Venture Out Project
- July: Wilderness Inquiry
- Sept: Girl Trek
As we open another month, we’re sharing another installment in our community effort to showcase organizations promoting social justice and more inclusive access to public lands. This month’s feature organization is Greening Youth Foundation.
About Greening Youth Foundation►
The Greening Youth Foundation (GYF), a woman and minority-founded and led nonprofit, works with youth and young adults to provide environmental and wellness education and pathways to green careers.
The Greening Youth Foundation’s (GYF) mission is to engage under-represented youth and young adults, while connecting them to the outdoors and careers in conservation. GYF’s cultural based environmental education programing engages children from local communities and exposes them to healthy lifestyle choices in order to create an overall healthy community.
GYF partners with several public lands agencies to provide internship opportunities for young adults. From the National Park Service to USDA Forest Service there is something for everyone. Other programs include: The Bureau of Land Management (DHA), Outdoor Retailer Partners and The Move Mountains Grant.
GYF also seeks to transform communities through outreach programs such as the Youth Conservation Corps, the Urban Youth Corps and Public School Initiatives.