• Thanks to your support, 2016 was a record-breaking year for Kids to Parks Day! Watch our KTP Day 2016 summary video.​

    Mapping our progress


  • Since 1983, NPT has supported and assisted in acquiring inholdings and in developing public and private partnerships to promote the acquisition and preservation of parks, wildlife refuges, historic landmarks, public lands, and water ways. We have completed more than 100 park projects benefiting 49 national park units and other public lands in 33 states. To learn more about about our work and how you can get involved, contact Dick Ring, NPT Park Projects Director.

  • Buddy Bison® School Program: Because Kids Need Parks and Parks Need Kids

    The Buddy Bison school program was created in 2009 to engage diverse children from Title I schools with their local, state and national parks to teach environmental education and the numerous benefits of outdoor recreation. If parks are to survive, the face of those parks must change and under-served communities must have access to these local cultural and environmental resources. More than 80% of the students in the Buddy Bison school program qualify for free or reduced-priced lunch, predominantly in inner city communities. This program has been used in 60 schools across the country in grades pre-K through 8th in public, public charter and private schools across the country (20 states and Washington D.C.).

    This experiential learning program enhances existing school curricula throughout the year with emphasis on STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) as well as history, language arts, reading, geography, the arts, and outdoor recreation. Students also learn about the careers of professionals who support our parks-- and the importance of stewarding our public lands. And in addition to bringing kids to parks, we bring parks to kids by arranging schools visits from our many conservation partners.

    To learn more about how you can get involved, contact Billy Schrack, NPT Director of Youth Programs.



Our partnership with Katten Muchin Rosenman, LLP began in 2012, when they provided a generous grant to engage students from José de Diego Community Academy (Chicago, IL) in our Buddy Bison environmental education program. Since that time the students have participated in a variety of outdoor experiences. In addition, teachers received our Buddy Bison toolkit filled with resources to incorporate environmental education into lesson plans throughout the year. 

Last month, the students had the opportunity to meet with a naturalist from the Hal Tyrell Trailside Museum in Chicago and take a guided tour and nature hike. To celebrate the end of the school year, the students will travel to Indiana Dunes where they will explore the diverse ecosystems of the national lakeshore. 

"We at Katten, Muchin Rosenman, LLP are delighted to partner with National Park Trust to sponsor José de Diego Community Academy as a Buddy Bison school. The feedback from the students and teachers has been so positive; parks are wonderful places for students to learn and enjoy," stated Megan McKeon, senior marketing manager. 

Through the Katten Cares program, employees also help the school with programs designed to improve students’ literacy, increase their use of technology, and encourage and reward academic achievement. Katten attorneys and staff engage in diverse activities with the school, including tutoring and reading programs, the Lawyers in the Classroom program, and a holiday book drive. 

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