Outdoor retailer L.L.Bean and the National Park Foundation (NPF), the official charity of America’s national parks, announced Monday (Oct. 22) that the goal of the “Million Moment Mission” has been reached, resulting in a donation of $1 million by L.L.Bean to support youth programming in our national parks.
The Million Moment Mission campaign was created in celebration of L.L.Bean’s 100th anniversary year, designed to inspire a love of the outdoors in the next generation, according to a news release.
With the campaign, L.L.Bean pledged to contribute $1 to NPF’s “America’s Best Idea” program for every outdoor moment shared. Thanks to the contribution of 1 million stories, photos and outdoor experiences, L.L.Bean and NPF have met their goal. The $1 million contribution from L.L.Bean will have an impact on 60,000 underserved children in America.
“We are overwhelmed by how many people have shared their excitement for the outdoors. In joining us in the Million Moment Mission and sharing their passion, our customers are helping to inspire the next generation of outdoor enthusiasts. We are proud to partner with the National Park Foundation on this vital initiative to get more kids into healthy, outdoor activities.” said Chris McCormick, CEO of L.L.Bean
Grants from the National Park Foundation, funded by L.L.Bean, have already helped kids and teens across the country get outdoors and work with mentors. They’ve hiked in national parks, kayaked along national seashores, and worked an archaeological dig.
“We are inspired by L.L. Bean’s commitment to connect America’s youth to their national parks,” said Neil Mulholland, President and CEO of the National Park Foundation. “Through their generous support, we will continue to nurture the next generation of outdoor enthusiasts and instill in them a sense of stewardship, ensuring that these special places will be protected and enjoyed today and always.”
Examples of programs made possible through L.L.Bean funding to the 2012 America’s Best Idea grants include:
- The Assateague Adventure Academy at Assateague Island National Seashore, Maryland, which encourages students to participate in recreational activities along the seashore, like kayaking and digging for clams.
- The Native American Conservation Corps at Canyon de Chelly National Monument, Arizona, who for the first time hired an all-Native American crew, giving local youth valuable job experience and a connection to the outdoors.
- Women on the Water: Leaders of Tomorrow, a program developed for high school girls from cities and towns surrounding the Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area, New Jersey and Pennsylvania, which teaches the girls to become environmental stewards as they learn key kayaking, canoeing and rafting techniques.
- Archaeological work in Great Smoky Mountains National Park, North Carolina, through which Cherokee youth and the local high schools engage in a two-week dig supervised by professional archaeologists.
- Voyageurs National Parks Teen Ambassadors Program, Minnesota, which brings kids from rural areas on outdoor adventures.