Partners in Building a Love for Nature
In partnership with the Department of Interior, and with support from American Express, the YMCA of Southern Arizona is supporting youth and families in engaging more with public lands. Specifically, this page is designed to help connect volunteers of all kinds with exciting projects hosted at parks and green spaces throughout Tucson.
Advancing the Department of the Interior’s goal of supporting the four pillars of its youth initiative; Play, Learn, Serve and Work.
There is a growing disconnect between youth and the outdoors. The Y, in partnership with the Department of the Interior and with support from American Express, wants to bridge that gap by connecting youth and families with green space, local parks and public lands within their communities. As part of Let’s Move! Outside, the Y is engaging more people in recreational and volunteer opportunities that help build a love for nature.
DEFINITIONS OF THE FOUR PILLARS
PLAY: To develop and enhance systemic opportunities meant for outdoor play for youth and families.
LEARN: To provide outdoor educational opportunities to students, such as: welcoming students into our nature’s classroom, and developing and strengthening new educational resources to reach more students.
SERVE: To engage volunteers annually on public lands in order to achieve a renewed emphasis on volunteer coordination and experience.
WORK: To develop the next generation of lifelong conservation stewards and ensures a skilled and diverse workforce pipeline.
iNaturalist: Record your observations, share the information with other naturalists, and discuss your findings. Don’t know what you found? Ask another naturalist who may know. Your data helps biodiversity scientists! Get the app or visit the website here.
Project NOAH: Project NOAH (Networked Organisms and Habitats) is also a tool to explore and document wildlife you see to harness the power of citizen scientists everywhere. Get the app or visit the website here.
What’s Invasive: Invasive species threaten native plants and animals by stealing their water and nutrients. Start an active site (at your school, local library, etc) and join the fight against invasive species! Get the app or visit the website here.
Every Kid in a Park: Every 4th Grader (or 4th Grade teacher) can get a FREE Every Kid in a Park Pass for 1 year of access to National Parks, Lands, and Waters for them and their family! Get your pass here.