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The National Park Service has successfully launched Restoring Natural and Cultural Balance along the San Juan River, a project that engages underserved Native American youth in natural and cultural stewardship activities along the San Juan River located within Glen Canyon National Recreation Area and the Navajo Indian Reservation.
Between July 21, 2012 and August 5, 2012, 25 Native American youth with 11 adult participants completed invasive non-native plant control, native seed collection, and wildlife monitoring. They also engaged in cultural heritage activities including traditional ceremonies and preparation of traditional Native American foods.
In today's modern world non-traditional influences such as urban culture and digital media, threaten age-old connections between Native Americans and the landscape of their home. The San Juan restoration project brings together Native American youth and Glen Canyon National Recreation Area staff in activities aimed at restoring connections between natural and cultural resources.
Funding for the project comes from a National Park Foundation Impact Grant aimed at supporting interactive and engaging projects that strengthen Americans' connections to their National Parks. The National Park Foundation, in partnership with ARAMARK through the Yawkey Foundation, The Fernandez Pave the Way Foundation and The HISTORY Channel, awarded Impact Grant grants to 62 national parks across the country totaling more than $500,000.