Youth Works in the Parks - Moab, UT

by Friends of Arches and Canyonlands Parks
Activity Type: Camping, Climbing, Hiking, Stewardship, Other
Region: Intermountain

Twice per year, Youth Works in the Parks takes urban youth from underserved populations in Salt Lake City to a southern Utah.

$5,000 Raised out of $5,000
3 Funders
72 Days Remaining

Please describe your project in more detail.

The Friends of Arches and Canyonlands Parks works in partnership with YouthWorks Salt Lake City and the National Parks Conservation Association to offer "Youth Works in the Parks."

Two times annually, Youth Works in the Parks takes marginalized urban youth from underserved populations in Salt Lake City to a southeast Utah national park for a three-day immersive experience. The long weekend includes:

• Participants camping in teepees at the Canyonlands Field Institute's Professor Valley Camp—situated along the Colorado River—or in one of the national park campgrounds. Youth learn skills in camp set up, food preparation, and clean up. 
• In the evenings, outdoor recreation business leaders, public land managers, and professional athletes speak to the youth to inspire deeper appreciation and understanding that these lands belong to all of us and are here for our enjoyment, as well as for future generations. 
• Participants enjoy a full day in one of the area’s national parks, where park rangers lead hikes to iconic destinations such as Delicate Arch, the Windows Section of Arches, Grandview Point in Canyonlands, and many places that few visitors get to experience. Rangers also provide information regarding job opportunities and teach youth how to connect with organizations such as the NPS Student Conservation Association to acquire resource management job skills.
• Each evening, weather permitting, the youth enjoy star viewing that is found only in the dark skies of the Colorado Plateau. Participants see the Milky Way and many constellations that are not visible from Salt Lake’s inner city neighborhoods. 
• During the fall program, youth learn to paddle a raft or row their own boats on a Colorado/San Juan River rafting trip or a canyoneering trip in a side slot canyon guided by a local outfitter. There is ample time to swim and hear river stories from the experienced guides. 
• On the final day, youth engage in a service project coordinated through the National Park Service or Canyonlands Field Institute. Service projects vary for each camp, but may include graffiti removal in the park, tent site improvements, and seed collection and distribution. 

Upon returning home, participants are supported in continuing their experience by sharing with peers and family members. They contribute videos and photos, write blog posts on social media and articles for local and regional news outlets. They also serve as mentors for other youth exploring the idea of participating in the program. We encourage them to foster their newly forged relationships with the national parks by reengaging on a regular basis, revisiting southeast Utah's parks for service projects,  as well as visiting parks closer to Salt Lake City. 

How many kids (grades K-8) will be directly engaged in this project?

100

What is the name or school district associated with the project?

Salt Lake City Public Schools

September 5, 2017 - Thank You REI and BOCO Gear!

Thank you to REI and BOCO gear for their generous donations and supporting fundraisers at Outdoor Retailer Summer Market.

October 25, 2017 - Thank You BOCO Gear

Thank you BOCO Gear for another donation towards Utah Parks4Kids.