The Youth We Reach
Who Do We Help?
The kids that we work with are kids around the Bay Area. They come from cities like Oakland, Richmond and some of the toughest neighborhoods in San Francisco, like Bayview-Hunter’s Point, the Tenderloin, and Chinatown. But they also come from places like Fresno where they aren’t necessarily in an urban environment, but where drug use may be one of the few activities that they’re drawn to by their peers. More specifically these kids come from over 300 different youth-serving organizations, from after-school programs to group homes, to gang-violence prevention programs to summer camps.
When we say “at-risk” we’re really talking about any and all kids that don’t have access to green healthy spaces to play in. Many studies have connected lack of imaginative time in the outdoors has resulted in the explosion of childhood diseases like ADD and obesity. Conversely, time outside on a regular basis, away from televisions and computers has been proven to increase learning and retention, confidence and self-esteem. In this respect we truly believe that all kids need to experience the outdoors, and deserve the opportunity to get out there, away from their electronics-filled lives and interact with each other and their environment in healthy ways.
The most comprehensive overview of the importance of taking youth to nature comes from Richard Louv’s book Last Child in the Woods – Saving out Children from Nature- Deficit Disorder. Learn more at: www.childrenandnature.org