Growing Stronger Together in 2022: Outdoors Alliance for Kids

by Jackie Ostfeld, OAK co-founder and chair As we head into winter, I am welcoming the short days and long nights as an invitation to slow down, rest, and reflect. Walking through my neighborhood park on a crisp cool day, I am filled with gratitude for my nearby parks and public lands, places I goContinue reading “Growing Stronger Together in 2022: Outdoors Alliance for Kids”

A Gala Sendoff, and an Important Reminder that Nature Heals

by Ayodele Abdul-Hadi, OAK Advisor Right on the waterfront, with a serene view of the sunset and San Francisco city skyline, I was part of a group of about 200 people attending the first in-person Outdoor Afro annual Glamp Out since the COVID-19 outbreak in March 2020. The evening was a beautiful celebration of BlackContinue reading “A Gala Sendoff, and an Important Reminder that Nature Heals”

Our Kids Are Facing a Mental Health Crisis, Nature Can Help

by Jackie Ostfeld and Monica Lopez Magee As we enter the third year of the COVID-19 pandemic, children and youth continue to face upheavals in their family, social, and educational lives. Their daily routines are disrupted by exposure alerts and quarantines, they may be unable to see friends and family, and the back-and-forth of virtual and in-person schoolingContinue reading “Our Kids Are Facing a Mental Health Crisis, Nature Can Help”

How a Young Generation of Outdoors Leaders Are Expanding Access to Nature

by Jackie Ostfeld, OAK Founder & Chair Sunshine and 80 degrees in Washington, DC – you couldn’t have asked for a better day to talk about the importance of nature. After a two-year pause due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Outdoors Alliance for Kids’ (OAK) annual OAK Week relaunched in person on Tuesday. Youth environmentalContinue reading “How a Young Generation of Outdoors Leaders Are Expanding Access to Nature”

My one wish is that every child has the RIGHT to outdoor access and public lands

by Tigran Nahabedian, OAK Advisor Time in nature teaches important lessons and skills, and is vital to our children’s development. But right now, access to parks and public lands is not equal across our communities, and climate change is increasingly affecting the green spaces we do have. One hundred million people in the US –Continue reading “My one wish is that every child has the RIGHT to outdoor access and public lands”

[RE-BLOG] The Outdoors Alliance for Kids is Pushing for National Change

This blog was written by and originally published by the National Recreation Foundation The Outdoors Alliance for Kids (OAK) is a coalition of organizations from across the country that are united around the common cause of getting kids outside and more connected to nature. Committed to multi-sector collaboration, strategic partnerships, and justice, equity, and inclusion, OAK isContinue reading “[RE-BLOG] The Outdoors Alliance for Kids is Pushing for National Change”

[RE-BLOG] Our Youth Are in Crisis — They Need the Outdoors

February 3, 2022 By Jackie Ostfeld This blog was originally posted on SierraClub.org. Photo courtesy of Bob Wick, Bureau of Land Management. For nearly two years, children and youth have seen their family, social, and educational lives disrupted by the COVID-19 pandemic. The pandemic has cut young people off from their support networks, and ratesContinue reading “[RE-BLOG] Our Youth Are in Crisis — They Need the Outdoors”

Senate Hearing Demonstrates Continued Bipartisan Support for Policy that Connects Children, Youth and Families with the Outdoors

December 8, 2021 By Jayni Rasmussen, Senior Campaign Representative, OAK As the Build Back Better Act moves through Congress, carrying with it billions in potential funding for outdoor access, the Senate is now considering an historic slate of bills that could transform who has access to public lands and waters.  Last week, the Senate Energy andContinue reading “Senate Hearing Demonstrates Continued Bipartisan Support for Policy that Connects Children, Youth and Families with the Outdoors”

[RE-BLOG]: Congresswoman Nanette Barragán: “Build Back Better Must Include Our Parks”

September 1, 2021 By Congresswoman Nanette Barragán and Jackie Ostfeld This blog was originally posted on SierraClub.org. Featured photo courtesy of the National Park Service. Summer and the outdoors go hand-in-hand, and nowhere is that felt more than in our parks. From hikes through ancient forests to weekend cookouts with friends to soccer or Little League games, our parks areContinue reading “[RE-BLOG]: Congresswoman Nanette Barragán: “Build Back Better Must Include Our Parks””

[Re-Blog] Congresswoman Katie Porter: “After a Year Indoors, We Must Support Every Kid Outdoors”

August 25, 2021 By Congresswoman Katie Porter and Jayni Rasmussen  This blog was originally posted on SierraClub.org. Featured photo: Big Bend at Zion National Park, courtesy Cadence C. Cook, National Park Service. Representative Katie Porter, one of the authors of this blog, knows firsthand the joy of the outdoors. Growing up, her family took vacations at national parksContinue reading “[Re-Blog] Congresswoman Katie Porter: “After a Year Indoors, We Must Support Every Kid Outdoors””