Everyone that works at Rails-to-Trails Conservancy is passionate about our mission, which includes the statement "Building Healthier Places for Healthier People."
This, of course, has special relevance to our children.
We are inspired by the challenge of helping future generations reverse the trend toward inactivity and obesity that health experts say is the most pressing public health crisis since the spread of HIV/AIDS.
It's why we work on Safe Routes to School (SRTS) projects and help local groups provide trails and safe pathways that allow students to ride or walk to and from school. It's why we've put a lot of time and resources into developing "Earn-a-Bike" programs, particularly in low-income and under-served neighborhoods. These programs allow children the chance to learn life-long skills in bike maintenance and safe riding, as well as equip them with their own bike and helmet to get them moving toward a healthier lifestyle.
RTC staff work tirelessly around the country on projects that open up opportunities for children and their families to get outside, get active and ultimately be together. We believe that trails are one of those special places where families can not only spend quality time together, which is so important, but also allow for that special time to be spent making every family member healthier through movement.
What better gift can we leave our children than an appreciation for being together, being healthy and being active? As an RTC staff member, I am proud to be a part of the movement to create places that make this possible.