National Park Foundation Starts Donation Fund To Help After Shutdown

Jan 17, 2019

Credit National Park Service

The official non-profit of the National Park Service has set up a fund to help repair parks once they reopen.

The National Park Foundation set up the Parks Restoration Fund in reaction to people calling the nonprofit and asking how they can help national parks during the partial government shutdown.

Will Shafroth, the president of the foundation, said this is the first time it has set up a fund during a government shutdown. But he said it is similar to disaster relief funds they've done in the past. He said the idea is to give concerned citizens an opportunity to do something positive.

"We want to be prepared to work with the park, superintendents and other folks in the service to identify what those needs are and be able to move quickly to help them reopen and get in good shape," said Shafroth.

He said the funds will only be used when the parks re-open, and won't be for everyday maintenance and operations but rather for basic impacts, like fallen trees.

"There's 85 million acres of land in the park system, and I would say every day there are a lot of trees that fall down in those parks and some of them fall down across trails or parking lots," he said.

The foundation is also asking for volunteers to help on the ground.