Coca-Cola North America Donates $2.5 Million To National Park Foundation
New Proud Partnership to focus on trail restoration, park stewardship and visitor experience
Coca-Cola North America today announced it has joined the National Park Foundation and the National Park Service as a Proud Partner of America’s National Parks through a commitment of $2.5 million over five years. The endowment will support efforts to link outdoor recreation, education and awareness to the physical and mental wellbeing of Americans.
“We are proud to support the national parks because we know that our partnership will go toward encouraging Americans to get more physically active while enjoying the beauty of our national parks,” said Katie Bayne, chief marketing officer, Coca-Cola North America. “Walking is a simple way to get fit. This partnership will help improve the conditions of many of our parks’ nature trails and allow many more Americans to enjoy them.”
The initial commitment will support trail restoration in Yellowstone National Park and a number of cause-related marketing programs through the National Park Foundation. Additionally, Coca-Cola North America plans to announce details later this year about valuable park project funding in support of the National Park Service’s upcoming 100th anniversary. Support delivered in partnership with the National Park Foundation will assist with trail restoration, creation and enhancement while engaging communities and youth in the stewardship and health benefits of our national parks.
“Private citizens and philanthropy have always played an important role in our National Park System and will continue to be vital in securing its future,” said Vin Cipolla, president and chief executive officer of the National Park Foundation. “We are honored to have Coca-Cola North America join with us to enhance recreational resources across the national park system, enabling experiences that park visitors will value and remember for a lifetime.”
“The National Park Service is dedicated to the conservation, protection, restoration and stewardship of nearly 400 natural, cultural and recreational sites across the nation, and to working with communities to preserve their special places and to offer local recreational opportunities,” said National Park Service Director, Mary Bomar. “As we prepare to celebrate the centennial of the National Park Service in 2016, this timely commitment of partnership from the National Park Foundation and Coca-Cola North America demonstrates the impact partnerships will have on the state of our parks.”
The National Park Foundation and the National Park Service launched Proud Partners of America’s National Parks in 2000. Through the program, global corporate leaders including American Airlines, Ford Motor Company, Unilever and now The Coca-Cola Company, have each committed to multi-year support of the National Park Foundation to help encourage more Americans to experience and support their national parks.
The Coca-Cola Company has a long-standing relationship with the National Parks System. In addition to creating print ads that featured some of the parks, The Coca-Cola Company launched several advertising campaigns promoting tourism, including “Discover America” and “Go America” during the 1960’s. Within a few years of Sprite being introduced in 1961, the names of 36 U.S. national parks and monuments appeared on the bottoms of bottles to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the National Park Service and to promote even further use and enjoyment of the federal recreation areas. The Coca-Cola Company also was the first corporate sponsor of the Statue of Liberty restoration project in celebration of her centennial on July 4, 1986.
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