Recreation, Education, and Service

Scout Ranger and troop leader clean up park.
Scout Ranger with a Scout leader picking up trash

NPS Photo

Scout Ranger Program

The Resource Stewardship Scout Ranger program invites Boy and Cub Scouts to participate in educational and/or volunteer service projects at national park sites to spark their awareness of the national parks and to provide Scouts with the opportunity to explore the national parks and learn more about protecting our natural and cultural resources. Check out what the Resource Stewardship Scout Ranger Program is all about here.

Girl Scouts read map.
Girl Scouts looking at a map

NPS Photo

Girl Scout Ranger Program

National Park Service and the Girl Scouts of the USA launched the "Girl Scout Ranger Program," a joint venture connecting girls with National Park Service sites throughout the United States, including monuments, seashores, and urban sites. Girls can participate in a variety of organized educational program or outdoor service projects.Girl Scouts may design their own project that aligns with their Girl Scout Journey experience, various badge activities, or a Take Action project. Check out what the Girl Scout Ranger Program is all about here.

YMCA members explore with a park ranger.
NPS-YMCA summer camp with a Student Conservation Association intern

NPS Photo

YMCA-NPS Summer Camp Program

The National Park Service and the YMCA of the USA are collaborating to provide fun, memorable, and meaningful experiences through summer camp programs for kids on public lands. This collaboration unites the resources and expertise of two organizations that are committed to youth engagement and development. Parks and Ys work together to create joint recreational, educational and service programs that emphasize the value and significance of resources in their communities. To learn more, click here!
boys and girls club members in rain coats with park ranger.
Youth on an Ultimate Journey through the Boys and Girls Clubs of America and NPS partnership

NPS Photo

The Ultimate Journey Program

The Ultimate Journey is the Boys & Girls Clubs of America's environmental education legacy programs that was revised in partnership with the National Park Service. It is a hands-on STEM curriculum, designed for kids and teens ages 9-13, and totally revamped for the 21st century. There are eight weeks of fun activities that can be adapted for each age group. Each activity also has variations and optional technology components. Click here to learn more about the Ultimate Journey.

Junior Rangers smiling as they hold up their Death Valley Junior Ranger booklets
Junior Rangers holding up booklets from Death Valley National Park

NPS Photo

Junior Ranger Program

Become a Junior Ranger! There is no age limit on these. The NPS Junior Ranger program is an activity based program conducted in almost all parks, and some Junior Ranger programs are national. Many national parks offer young visitors the opportunity to join the National Park Service "family" as Junior Rangers. Start your journey, and explore, learn, and protect! Click here to learn more.
Three 4th grade students hold up Every Kid Outdoors passes
Youth holding up Every Kid Outdoors passes

Photo Courtesy of Auriza Ugalino

Kids in Parks

National parks are great places to explore anything kids can imagine. Go on an outdoor adventure. Walk in the footsteps of famous people. Take in unique scenery. Explore new interests. Experience real places you may have only heard about. But most of all, national parks are places where you can have fun and create memories that last a lifetime. Click here to learn more about Junior Ranger Programs, the Every Kid Outdoors Program, and other opportunities.

Last updated: June 6, 2023