One of the things that makes Buffalo truly unique is its Olmsted park system. Except for the Scajaquada Expressway (198), the city is brilliantly connected by historic parkways. While the parks and the park system are looking great today, that was not always the case. The Buffalo Olmsted Parks Conservancy has done a smashing job of caring for these idyllic treasures. But in order to keep the momentum going, these fragile assets need buy-in from the community, especially young people who are the future stewards of the public lands.
In order to ensure that there are successors, who will better understand and care for the park system, the Conservancy has established Young Professionals for Olmsted Parks (YPOP). The program, which is open to young professionals age 25-40, will not only ensure that the parks endure and flourish for years to come, it will also act as a tool for the young professionals to network, to grow as individuals, and to make a positive impact on the city.
The six-month program will allow participants to:
- Provide opportunities to gain greater appreciation for Buffalo’s Olmsted parks and green spaces
- Learn about the Conservancy’s work and purpose through direct access to staff, members of the Board of Trustees, and volunteers
- Network for professional development with local leaders and people of influence
- Support the Conservancy’s mission for the parks through fundraising and friend-raising
“On behalf of Conservancy staff and our Board of Trustees, I am pleased to officially kick off YPOP: Young Professionals for Olmsted Parks and encourage anyone interested to apply to join the inaugural class,” said Stephanie Crockatt, Executive Director. “At a time when parks and participation are critical, this innovative program will engage young professionals from diverse backgrounds, providing a unique participatory experience in connecting them to their parks and community, while building their peer and professional network for nonprofit service.”
YPOP Program Timeline:
- January – Kick-off Party
- February – Olmsted 101 – History and FUN, All in one!
- March – Pens & Pints – Spring Appeal
- March – Network & Professional Development Opportunity
- April – Network & Professional Development Opportunity
- April – Volunteer Event in your Olmsted Parks
- May – Spring into Summer Luncheon
- May – Olmsted Park System Tour and Annual Meeting
- June – YPOP Graduation
*All events will be transitioned to a virtual format if needed
Applications are open now through October 30th, 2020. A brief interview will be held in early December, in-person or virtual, and a formal Welcome Packet will be sent out shortly after, with program launch in January 2021. Learn more about the program and apply today at www.bfloparks.org/ypop. For any questions regarding the YPOP Program, please reach out to Sarah Larkin at Sarah@bfloparks.org or 716-838-1249 ext. 18.