The PA Parks and Forests Foundation will continue to make state parks and forests more accessible, build volunteer chapters across the state and provide technical assistance to friends groups, state parks and forests thanks to a new grant from Department of Conservation and Natural Resources announced Wednesday.
PPFF works closely with the 120 state parks and 2.2 million acres of forest through program, volunteerism, establishment of friends groups, and by serving as a resource.
“We are pleased to continue our relationship with state parks and state forests,” says PPFF President Marci Mowery. “The Foundation understands the value our state parks and forests provide to the residents of the Commonwealth, from being economic engines in tourism to promoting better health through outdoor recreation, clean air and clean water.”
As part of its commitment to ensure a place, and an activity, for everyone in Pennsylvania’s state parks and forests, in the past year, PPFF has:
-- Supported the work of hundreds of volunteers in 36 PPFF Friends Groups across the state, resulting in over 40,000 volunteer hours spent hosting festivals, maintaining trails, building playgrounds and more to benefit our public lands
-- Ran the Great Pennsylvania Outdoor Challenge, a program promoting fitness, healthier eating, learning new skills or spending time in outdoor recreation
-- Held the first-ever Outdoor Day for wounded and disabled service members and their families, where 150 people were introduced to more than 20 different outdoor pursuits that could be adapted to their needs, including kayaking, hiking and fishing
-- Organized trainings for DCNR staff and volunteers on assisting those with special needs to engage in outdoor recreation and other topics
-- Promoted Pennsylvania’s conservation history by developing a statewide conservation heritage project, including a documentary and educational materials
-- Hosted an annual award ceremony to honor those persons and organizations doing exemplary work to promote, enhance and protect state parks and forests in Pennsylvania
“This grant award is recognition of the cooperative recreation and conservation work proposed by the Parks and Forests Foundation that will benefit our State Parks and Forests,” DCNR Secretary Ellen Ferretti said. “DCNR is committed to building partnerships with nonprofit organizations to provide quality park, recreation and conservation opportunities and to improve the quality of life in Pennsylvania.”
Funding for DCNR grants comes from the Keystone Recreation, Park and Conservation Fund (KEY 93), the Environmental Stewardship Fund (Growing Greener I), and federal funding sources.For more information, visit the PA Parks and Forests Foundation website.