National Park Trust is committed to getting kids unplugged, outside, and inspired by the natural world. Its signature Buddy Bison School Program has engaged 30,000 youngsters with American parks and public lands – 10,000 from the DC metro area alone – providing teachers with hands-on resources for science and history classes that enhance existing school curricula. And the benefits to children’s brains and bodies are undeniable: studies show that spending time outdoors eases symptoms of depression and ADHD, and helps curb obesity and diabetes. To create opportunities for kids to visit local, state, or national parks, NPT handles the logistics and covers transportation costs (the primary obstacle for most schools). From park trips, to canoe adventures, to service projects, the Trust has made conservation relevant and exciting for thousands of DC-area youth. After all, preservation is at the heart of NPT, which has overseen 100 land projects in parks, forests, and wildlife refuges. The goal of the Trust's education programs? Cultivating future park stewards and conservationists. You can join your resources with theirs.

Headquarters: MD-Montgomery County

Where They Operate: DC-Citywide; MD-Statewide; MD-Montgomery County; MD-Prince George's County; VA-City of Alexandria

Age Groups Served: Youth (5-11); Pre-teen/teen (12-17)

Population(s) Served: Men/Boys; Women/Girls; Students; Low- to Moderate-Income

Schools They Work In: All DC Public Schools; Harmony Hills Elementary School, Silver Spring; Beacon Heights Elementary School, Riverdale Park; Jefferson Houston Elementary School, Alexandria; Elise Whitlow Stokes Community Freedom Public Charter School, D.C.; Neval Thomas Elementary School, D.C.; St. Frances Xavier, D.C.; Washington Jesuit Academy, D.C.; Washington School for Girls, D.C.

  • Number of clients served in outdoor education programs (students/others) annually:   10,000-15,000
  • Other: :  
    We have completed more than 100 park projects benefiting 49 national park units and other public lands in 33 states.
  • Number of children we prepare for success in school annually:  
    NPT will develop the mechanism to get all 3,200 fourth-grade students in DCPS to a national park during the 2016-17 school year.

Awards & Recognition

NPT received a Top Rated ranking of A from Charity Watch - June 2015

NPT meets all 20 standards of the Better Business Bureau Wise Giving Alliance - June 2015

NPT is a Gold-Level GuideStar Exchange participant, demonstrating a commitment to transparency. - June 2015

NPT's Annual Report won the 2009 ECO Award of Excellence for environmental writing, the highest honor awarded by the organization Global Environmental Communications (GEC). NPT's website also won an ECO Award of Merit - July 2009


Budget (FY2015)

  • $3 million or higher
  • $1 million to $3 million
  • The current budget for National Park Trust is: $500k to $1 million
  • Less than $500k

Catalogue charities range in size from $100,000 to $3 million. This graphic indicates the budget range of the organization featured here. If you see an organizational budget above the $3 million mark, that is because the featured charity has grown in size since it first appeared in the Catalogue. We proudly present on our website the work of these "growth" charities.

About the Catalogue for Philanthropy

The Catalogue selected us as one of its featured charities! Each year 120 expert reviewers evaluate applicants for distinction, merit, and impact. Each featured charity has been successfully site visited and its financials given the thumbs up. The Catalogue for Philanthropy charges no fees and raises funds separately to support its work. Since 2003, it has raised over $30 million for charities across Greater Washington.

The Catalogue for Philanthropy looks to friends like you to keep our services independent and entirely free of charge. Consider a small contribution to the Catalogue to cap off your gift and help the causes you care about get the full support they deserve!

If you like National Park Trust you might also like