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Yosemite National Park, with donors' help, expands at-risk youth programs

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Yosemite National Park, with donors' help, expands at-risk youth programs
August 03, 2012 08:37PM
Yosemite National Park, with donors' help, expands at-risk youth programs
By Paul Rogers

Posted: 08/03/2012 12:10:58 PM PDT

... This year, more than 47,000 young people will participate in 30 programs at Yosemite, more than double the number of students from five years ago.

Much of the growth is due to a concerted effort by a San Francisco nonprofit group, the Yosemite Conservancy, which has tripled its annual spending for youth programs at the park in recent years, to $1.3 million. The money is funding everything from Yosemite's popular Junior Ranger program to its Youth Conservation Corps, a group of 35 high school students who restored 30 miles of trails, replaced 175 campfire rings and installed 125 new picnic tables in the park last year.

"It's stunning the change you see in kids," said Mike Tollefson, president of the Yosemite Conservancy. "Kids learn about themselves. They learn about who they are. They go away with great life experiences, whether it's learning their role in doing the dishes at night or learning how to work with others. They learn about self-confidence and their own value away from home."


http://www.mercurynews.com/california/ci_21229150/yosemite-national-park-donors-help-expands-programs-young
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