Youth Education Programs
The Friends of Arches and Canyonlands Parks in partnership with the National Park Service encourages visiting youth, diverse populations, and local residents to care for their surrounding parks. We provide the funding needed to get youth outside to explore and form their own connections to the landscapes, and grow as lifelong stewards of national parks.
Youth Art in the Parks “Look Where We Live”
Once a year, Moab’s 4th and 5th-grade classes participate in Youth Art in the Parks which takes students into local national parks during their landscape art curriculum. The Friends teaches about the legacy of Bates Wilson, the Father of Canyonlands, and his enthusiasm for connecting young people to the national parks. After in-class work, art teachers and Friends volunteers take students on a field trip to a national park to observe the landscape and apply their learning to their art. Student artwork is permanently displayed in the Canyonlands and Arches National Parks visitor centers year-round and published in a book annually.
Latinos In Action (LIA) Moab Adventure
The Friends of Arches and Canyonlands Parks partners with the Bureau of Land Management, the National Park Service, Utah chapters of Latinos in Action, and a local river outfitters to host the Latinos in Action Moab Adventure. This program brings LIA high school and college-aged participants to Moab for a weekend of camping, whitewater rafting, ranger-led hikes, and guest speakers that provide information about potential career opportunities.
The Friends of Arches and Canyonlands Parks partners with Project Archeology Utah, the Bureau of Land Management, the National Park Service, and the Girl Scouts of Utah to educate youth on the scientific, historical, and cultural significance of archaeological resources. This program gives students a basic understanding of archaeology while teaching the importance of respect and protection for our nation’s rich cultural heritage.
Pueblo of the Acoma
Working directly with the National Park Service, the Friends provides funding for Native American youth from Arizona to spend a week on the lands of their ancestors: Hovenweep and Natural Bridges National Monuments in southeastern Utah. Youth connect with their ancient lands and spirit world, and experience their ancestral region from the perspective of their own culture. Guided by elders, youth engage in dance, prayer, hiking and exploration, reflection, and discussions in their own language about what the land means to their people.