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News & Commentary In the News

Governor Announces Nearly $1 Million in Grants to Help Get Washington State Kids Outside

Washington State Governor Jay Inslee announced that nearly $1 million in new grants will be going out to 19 outdoor education and recreation programs located in 14 counties across Washington State to help more children gain exposure to outdoor activities and supports the governor’s Healthiest Next Generation efforts to help kids be more active.

10 Parks That Have Shaped American Cities

A new show from PBS, “10 Parks That Changed America,” looks at the vital role that urban parks play in shaping the development of our cities as well as our interactions with parks and with each other. The show is available for viewing online on

Get Healthy, Get a Dog: The Health Benefits of Canine Companionship

Want to get your child outdoors? Get a dog, say researchers at Harvard. A special report from Harvard Medical School touts the many positive health benefits of owning a dog including getting outside and helping kids become more active, secure, and responsible.

What You Learn at Forest School

Inspired by Richard Louv’s “Last Child in the Woods”, the forest school movement is steadily growing in Ireland — made up of nearly 100 forest schools, and a soon-to-be-launched Irish Forest School Association. Movement leaders believe forest schools empower children to explore nature and manage risk and hope to see forest school curriculum in every school in Ireland.

FACT SHEET: On Every Kid In a Park Day of Action, White House Announces Commitments to Getting Nearly Half a Million Kids Outside

The White House announced that more than two dozen foundations, corporations and nonprofit organizations (C&NN included!) will support Every Kid in a Park by funding trips to national parks and other public lands for nearly half a million 4th graders across the U.S. The announcement comes alongside many events happening across the country to celebrate National Park Week and the National Park Service Centennial.

Author’s Challenge: America’s Best City for Children and Nature?

At the launch event for his new book, “Vitamin N,” C&NN Co-Founder, author Richard Louv, addressed the pitfalls of living in a world that prioritizes virtual experiences over real ones. Louv issued a challenge to San Diego (and all city leaders) to take action to create the most nature-abundant and nature-accessible city in the world.

Why Living Around Nature Could Help You Live Longer

A study published in the “Environmental Health Perspectives” journal found that people who live in “greener,” more vegetated areas, have a lower risk of mortality. C&NN Board Member and Dean of Univ. of Washington’s School of Public Health, Howard Frumkin suggests an explanation may be “biophilia,” the instinctive bond between human beings and other living systems.

REI Foundation Invests in National Park Projects

REI is giving $1 million to the 21st Century Conservation Corps, or 21CSC, with the goal of employing veterans, urban kids, and at-risk youth work in U.S. National Parks. It is the biggest one-time investment the REI Foundation has ever awarded to a single entity. 21CSC is a joint venture of public and private organizations that supports a network of more than 30,000 members across the U.S. working to preserve and improve the outdoors.

The Cities Connect Children to Nature Initiative Underway in Madison

The city of Madison, WI, is assessing how well its children are connecting to nature and where gaps in equity of nature access exist. Madison is one of seven cities engaged in the Cities Connecting Children to Nature planning phase. Several public and private partners are collaborating on an effort to make local outdoor recreation resources more accessible to kids.

Amtrak Offers Every Kid in a Park Discount This Summer

To celebrate the Centennial of the National Park Service, Amtrak is offering discounted train tickets for fourth graders visiting U.S. national parks and public lands. Amtrak is a transportation partner in the White House’s Every Kid in a Park initiative.

Georgia School Ensures Kids Connect with Nature – and Go Home Dirty

CBS This Morning takes a look at nature-based learning through the lens of Chattahoochee Hills Charter School (CHCS), outside of Atlanta, where students typically spend one-third of their school day outdoors. Like many nature-based schools, CHCS was inspired by author Richard Louv’s “Last Child in the Woods.”

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