Nature Keeper Fund

The Nature Keeper Fund ensures that our natural world is left in the capable and passionate hands of the next generation.

One kid skateboards through Prospect Park in Brooklyn, another visits Arkansas’s Pinnacle Mountain State Park on a school trip and a third camps with her family in the Tetons: Getting kids outside, connected to nature with an ethic of caring is the focus of the new Nature Keeper Fund. The Nature Keeper fund helps kids and teens of all backgrounds connect to nature through Leave No Trace.

We know that kids who spend time outside not only have higher levels of fitness, lower anxiety and stronger bones, but by being outside nature benefits too. When kids spend time in nature they are building an ethical framework, love, appreciation and competence for the outdoors.

With the bold goal of 500,000 more kids reached every year with Leave No Trace, the Nature Keeper Fund imagines a world where kids get on trails, play in parks, float down rivers or simply swing at playgrounds — connecting with the outdoors and empowered to care for nature. The fund will sharpen youth environmental skills, aid in their physical and emotional health and self-esteem, foster conservation leaders for tomorrow — all while supporting the sustainability of the natural world. The fund will accomplish this through:

1. Granting new scholarships supporting kids and community groups with a special Turner Scholarship for young women who seek high-level Leave No Trace training. Research indicates that while outdoor recreation participation rates are growing for boys, they are shrinking for girls. This is why it is more important than ever to provide opportunities like this specifically for girls.

2. Providing education materials and support through Connect Grants for cultural inclusive youth programs that have an outdoor component to their work. Ensuring that kids who are from groups traditionally underrepresented in the outdoors is part of Leave No Trace’s mandates and is an essential component to protecting the outdoors.

3. Activating kids of all ages in a grassroots, hands-on way through Youth Citizen Science. The Children and Nature Network reports that kids spend 90% of their time indoors. As kids are more and more isolated from nature, Youth Citizen Science is a gateway to getting them out, observing and active.

The 5 for 5 Plan

Leave No Trace has begun to build a pool of Nature Keeper Fund donors. The organization seeks a total of 25 donors who each pledge $5,000 every year for 5 years to realize the fund. Find out more information about the Nature Keeper Fund and your involvement.

Shawn & Lindsay Turner

“Leave No Trace has been an important part of our family for over a decade. We are proud that our daughters are excited about Leave No Trace, and in that spirit, Lindsay and I are honored to start the Nature Keeper Fund.”

Julie Klein

“Since childhood I was blessed to have access to and understand the value of the outdoors and protection of nature and its creatures. These experiences shaped my professional and personal interests. As a long-time supporter of Leave No Trace, I have chosen to be a multi-year supporter of the newly created Nature Keeper Fund to ensure children from all walks of life have direct access to engaging, science-based outdoor use ethics to inspire lifelong stewardship values and practices.”

Rob Stephens

“I’m pledging support because I’m excited about the new Nature Keeper Fund. The best asset Leave No Trace has is our passionate volunteers who make education happen. Teaching kids Leave No Trace is rewarding as they seem to have an inherent outdoor responsibility and easily grasp the idea of protecting nature. I believe that the Nature Keeper Fund does the important work to ensure that our beloved outdoor world will be in good hands.”

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