September 18, 2008 - Grand Canyon National Park - Toyota is providing $500,000 and five hybrid vehicles to the Grand Canyon Association to support a number of environmental, education and safety programs for visitors to the park and high school students across the country, it was announced today.
This donation is part of a $5 million contribution from Toyota in support of five National Parks and the National Park Foundation to enhance environmental leadership and educational programs at parks around the country. The company is also donating 23 vehicles in total to the national parks.
"Toyota's philanthropic support makes more resources available to the youth of this country and ensure the future stewardship of Grand Canyon National Park and other public lands," said Susan Schroeder, executive director of the Grand Canyon Association, the official fundraising partner of the Grand Canyon.
Grand Canyon National Park will use Toyota’s contribution to expand the park's Preventative Search and Rescue Program to the North Rim. This program ensures that visitors have a safe and enjoyable experience at the park. On the South Rim alone, this program can reach up to 1,200 hikers each day. A majority of the funds will be used to support the Grand Canyon's Environmental Education (GCEE) program, which will offer travel grants to schools in inner-cities, rural counties and Indian reservations to enable the groups to bring their students to the park. Also as part of GCEE, cold weather gear will be purchased to loan to students visiting in the late fall and winter, expanding the timeframe when schools can visit the park.
Other education programs funded by Toyota's contribution include a School Resource Ranger to be on the grounds of the Grand Canyon School each school day; adding three horses for the use of mounted rangers; and strengthening the Rim to River stewardship development program, which is available to high school students from across the country and supports the Department of the Interior's No Child Left Inside Initiative.
"The partnership with Grand Canyon National Park is a great opportunity for Toyota to extend its environmental and educational community-based programs," said Michael Rouse, vice president, philanthropy and community affairs, Toyota Motor Sales, U.S.A., Inc. "We are proud to partner with such an iconic national park to develop and offer programs that inspire the youth of the nation."
In addition to the monetary contribution, Toyota will donate five hybrid vehicles - two Prius and three Highlander Hybrids - to Grand Canyon National Park. The vehicles will be used to support the Toyota fund programs as well as various other initiatives throughout the park.
"Toyota has become a champion of national parks through their generosity and leadership in environmental initiatives," said Steve Martin, Grand Canyon National Park superintendent. "Their donation of five fuel saving vehicles helps to support the National Park Service mission and promotes a positive course to a cleaner, more environmentally responsible future."
Toyota (NYSE: TM) established operations in the United States in 1957 and currently operates 10 manufacturing plants, with another under construction in Mississippi. Toyota is committed to being a good corporate citizen in the communities where it does business and believes in supporting programs with long-term sustainable results. Through its corporate initiatives, manufacturing operations and philanthropy, Toyota supports numerous organizations across the country, focusing on education, the environment and safety. In 2007, Toyota contributed more than $56 million to philanthropic programs in the U.S. For more information on Toyota's commitment to improving communities nationwide, visit www.toyota.com/community.
About Grand Canyon Association
Grand Canyon Association (GCA) is a private nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization established in 1932 for the sole purpose of supporting the National Park Service at the Grand Canyon. The Association is made up of several different businesses under a single umbrella—retail bookstores, a field seminar program, a publishing company, and a membership organization. GCA receives no public funding; it earns income through its various enterprises and supplements its income with membership fees and donations. Profits are returned to the Park to enable education, conservation and research programs that would not otherwise be possible. In its long history Grand Canyon Association has donated to the Park more than $28 million in funding and services. This continuing support is vital to the Park’s ability to reach out to visitors and constituents with information and services that help them to understand and appreciate this remarkable landscape, and to preserve it for generations to come. In May 2008, the Association became the official fundraising partner for Grand Canyon National Park.
About Grand Canyon National Park
Grand Canyon National Park encompasses 277 miles of the world-famous Grand Canyon of the Colorado River and includes adjacent uplands from the southern terminus of Glen Canyon National Recreation Area to the eastern boundary of Lake Mead National Recreation Area. The canyon itself is almost a mile deep and is 18 miles across at its widest point. Here the forces of erosion have exposed an immense variety of formations which illustrate vast periods of geological history. Human history is also preserved here, with archeological sites and artifacts revealing continuous occupation of the canyon for at least 10,000 years. The park contains six vegetation formations which contribute to an amazing diversity of life, including 538 documented mammal, bird, fish, reptile and amphibian species and 1750 vascular plant species. The park also contains critical and fragile riparian resources. Grand Canyon National Park was originally established as a forest reserve in 1893. It was then designated a national monument in 1908, and finally achieved national park status in 1919. Today, the park receives approximately 4.5 million visitors each year, making it the second most visited national park and the most visited destination park in the nation.
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