Foster Family Park Passes Program

Vermont Parks Forever Provides Free Park Passes for Foster Families

As part of its efforts to increase access to Vermont State Parks, Vermont Parks Forever raises $4500 annually to provide 150 free park passes to Vermont foster families. The passes will enable foster families to fish and swim at Elmore, mountain bike the new trails at Little River State Park, hike the trails at Muckross State Park and enjoy the thousands of other family-friendly recreational opportunities our state parks have to offer.

It’s so important for young people to have access to our parks,” says Sarah Alberghini Winters of Vermont Parks Forever. When kids explore the outdoors, they build healthy bodies and minds. And they grow up to become responsible stewards of the natural world.”

The free passes fill a key gap in foster families’ access to parks. The Vermont Department of Forests, Parks & Recreation provides free park passes to children in foster care. But kids often miss the chance to visit parks because their foster families can’t afford passes for themselves. The Vermont Department of Children and Families provides 200 free passes to foster parents each summer, but that is not enough to meet the current need. Vermont Parks Forever is able to offer 150 more passes thanks to the donations of these generous donors:

  • Cashdan/Stein Great Grandmother Fund of the Vermont Community Foundation
  • Charles P. Ferro Foundation
  • The Alchemist
  • National Life Group Foundation
  • Vermont-NEA
  • Vermont Parks Forever Supporters
  • Vermont Parks Forever Board and Staff Members

Thanks so much for the state park passes. We used them all the time to bring the kiddos to Crystal Lake.  Watching my foster son gain confidence in his swimming, making friends and memories, made me so happy!  On many occasions we would arrive mid-morning and wouldn’t leave until nearly sunset, enjoying the barbecue pits with our friends & family.  We are so grateful to be able to have unlimited access to that park. ~ A foster mom