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Natural Connections

Inspiring the next generation to bond with nature and chart a path to a secure and fulfilling life.

We are 100% committed to making sure that no matter which neighborhood or articulation area a young person is growing up in, access to Outdoor Lab is available to them. This means breaking down barriers to access. We are doing this through the steady execution of the Strategic Plan the board approved two years ago.

The plan lays out a vision through three Strategic Pillars – Strong Partnerships, Lasting Support, and Community Relevance. The Outdoor Lab Foundation works alongside teachers, Jeffco Leadership, and local partners to advance strategic initiatives and activities that ensure high quality outdoor education is available to all students growing up in our community.

We are developing Strong Partnerships by growing our Volunteer Program, investing in Site Maintenance, and resourcing our Student Leaders. Looking ahead to 2024, I am very excited to see our volunteer project calendar expand to include more opportunities for the public to do more hand-on work at our sites. Even more exciting is the fledging of our Career Pathways Program in which more young people, inspired by Outdoor Lab, develop meaningful job skills and career readiness experiences that put them on a path to a long a fulfilling career girded by a passion for the natural world.

We are building Lasting Support for Outdoor Lab by opening important revenue streams for the organization and competing at the local, state, and national level for game changing grants and sponsorships. We continue to earn the highest ratings by independent charity review agencies – Four Star by Charity Navigator and Platinum Transparency by Candid. Moreover, we are proud Environmental Partners of 1% for the Planet.

We are increasing our Community Relevance by participating in more outreach opportunities at schools and community events thanks to our volunteer-based Community Outreach Program. We have expanded our multi-lingual communications on our website, through our evening presentations, in our Lab Card flyers, and more. We have implemented teacher feedback surveys for three consecutive years to garner important information on what we can do to improve Outdoor Lab for teachers and students alike. Last but not least, we recently released a robust Impact Report which measured how Outdoor Lab is successful in growing social-emotional wellness in our students.

We wouldn’t be able to achieve these milestones without you. You are the advocates, supporters, volunteers, and practitioners who engage weekly, monthly, and annually to help us achieve our mission. Thank you for your continued involvement in this important local tradition. I wish you prosperous and adventurous 2024. If you would like to get more involved in our work, please reach out to me at


Bryan Martin

Executive Director | Outdoor Lab Foundation