The North Face today announced Explore Fund, a grant-giving program committed to supporting nonprofit, community organizations that break down the barriers to getting youth outdoors. The North Face announced details of the program at the first ever Outdoor Nation Youth Summit in New York City.

Explore Fund ( applications will be accepted online and vetted by a youth advisory council and issue experts that will determine the most promising projects. The grants will be up to $2,500 and awarded in the fall.


“Today's young skiers, campers, runners and climbers are tomorrow’s outdoor enthusiasts and conservationists,” said Steve Rendle, President of The North Face and VF Outdoor Americas. “We are providing education, access and connection through ongoing events, funding and PlanetExplore-an online community that helps individuals and families discover local outdoor recreational activities. Our goal is to get more people outside, having fun and exploring their world in ways that are meaningful to them.”

Longtime partner The Conservation Fund also announced a $50,000 matching grant to the Outdoor Foundation to be used with the Explore Fund to support concepts generated by the Outdoor Nation delegates.

Outdoor Nation brought  together a delegation of 500 young people from each of the 50 states to champion the outdoors at a summit and youth festival June 19-20 in New York City. The delegates were selected based on outdoor interest and a commitment to lead local, regional and national efforts that will reconnect youth and the outdoors.

“Reconnecting young people with the outdoors is critical for the health of our population, our economy and our environment. It’s time for a new Outdoor Revolution and we need young people to step up and lead. Thanks to the Outdoor Foundation, The North Face and our many other partners, the delegates at the Outdoor Nation Youth Summit will for the first time be able to do just that,” said Larry Selzer, President and CEO, The Conservation Fund.”

“Recent high profile government initiatives like the America’s Great Outdoors program and the First Lady’s ‘Let’s Move’ campaign are part of a national trend to encourage Americans – especially youth – to lead healthier lifestyles and reconnect with nature. Across the country programs are trying to get kids outside and moving; however, few programs are focused on young people as leaders,” said Chris Fanning, Executive Director, The Outdoor Foundation. “Outdoor Nation and the Explore Fund initiatives are two of the first efforts that aim to empower youth to champion outdoor change in their communities and on their campuses.”