The Greenwell Foundation’s mission is simple:
To provide inclusive and accessible outdoor and nature programs that everyone can enjoy.
And one look at the calendar at the Greenwell Foundation’s website and Facebook page tell you just how the organization lives up to this charge. Equestrian and nature programs are offered throughout the year, and the summer months are booked by summer camps. The programs are inclusive so anyone can participate.
That inclusivity is at the heart of everything the Greenwell Foundation does. Its programs are designed so people with all types of disabilities can take part without the focus being on that person’s disability. “Additionally,” the foundation says on its website, “Greenwell hopes to give people who may not have a disability insight that allows them to know that people are people first.”
The Greenwell Foundation operates out of Greenwell State Park in Hollywood, a property that the foundation runs in partnership with the Maryland Department of Natural Resources. The park sits on the banks of the Patuxent River and offers endless opportunities for adventure on land and on water.
The land for the park was donated to the state by John Philip Greenwell, Jr., who established the Greenwell Foundation in 1966 as he was making long-term plans for his property. Greenwell was a visionary, and his commitment to making nature and outdoor experiences for all is what drives the foundation’s work today. Greenwell “envisioned a place where people with disabilities could come and experience the beauty of nature and the joy of outdoor recreation, just like everyone else,” the foundation says on its website.
The Greenwell Foundation offers several types of programs at Greenwell State Park, including:
- Equestrian: Group and private riding lessons, therapeutic riding lessons, trail rides in the park, and carriage driving lessons.
- Nature Programs: Discovery Time events are planned for younger and school-age children, while preteens and teens can participate in Fire Within, a program that gives them the chance to learn new skills and become more connected with nature. There’s even a program for adults called Watershed Heroes.
- Summer Day Camps: Camps for kids age 6 to 14 are planned throughout the summer, covering everything from horses to fishing to nature.
Want to get involved? There are plenty of opportunities for volunteers at Greenwell, whether you’re interested in helping with equestrian programs, nature activities, or something more specialized.
(Images via the Greenwell Foundation website.)
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