NWF and Let’s Move! in Estes Park, Colorado

from Wildlife Promise

This post was written by Patrick Fitzgerald, NWF’s Director of Education Advocacy.

Hello from Colorado!

Roan Plateau

Roan Plateau. Photo by Colorado Environmental Coalition

This week I’m at the 125th anniversary of camping celebration at the beautiful YMCA of the Rockies’ Estes Park Center.  The center sits 8,000 feet above sea level, adjacent to Rocky Mountain National Park and surrounded by beautiful mountain peaks and abundant wildlife.  I’ve seen a dozen Elk and counting!

This afternoon I presented on a panel with colleagues from the National Park Service, the U.S. Forest Service, Let’s Move, REI, The Outdoor Foundation, National Park Conservation Association, Sierra Club and the American Hiking Society.  We’re here to discuss how our organizations and agencies can partner with YMCA camping programs.

Earlier today Robin Schepper, new executive director of Michelle Obama’s Let’s Move! program, spoke about the First Lady’s goals for combating the childhood obesity crisis within a generation.

Schepper highlighted federal cross-agency collaborations including the development of the White House Task Force on Childhood Obesity report and this summer’s America’s Great Outdoors initiative, as well as the new Let’s Move! cities and towns effort.

While speaking today, Schepper highlighted efforts to get kids moving outdoors in nature through the Let’s Move Outside initiative. Launched by Michelle Obama on June 1, Let’s Move Outside was announced the same day NWF and seven partner organizations launched a new strategic alliance called the Outdoors Alliance for Kids.

Let’s Move Outside is growing and we need your help

Schepper said that Let’s Move Outside will be expanding to connect more children, youth and families with state and urban parks, and we must address barriers and make local parks safe for kids to play, get schools to adopt a local park, and provide better transportation options.

To learn more about the health benefits of nature, and to read more about NWF’s Be Out There campaign, visit beoutthere.org.

Follow the author on Twitter @PatrickNWF