“State Parks Youth Corps gives young Missourians the opportunity to gain valuable job skills while making a difference in Missouri’s outdoor areas,” said Gov. Jay Nixon. “Since 2010, we’ve been able to undertake a wide variety of meaningful projects and are looking forward to what these young people are sure to accomplish in 2014.”
“We’ve been incredibly pleased with the contributions these young people have made to Missouri’s state parks and historic sites over the past several years,” said Bill Bryan, director of Missouri State Parks. “We look forward to continuing this important partnership for the benefit of the participants and the state’s award-winning parks system.”
Since the program began in 2010, SPYC workers have completed more than 550,000 hours in Missouri state parks and historic sites. During 2013, SPYC workers put in more than 70,000 hours, performing a variety of tasks, ranging from routine maintenance work and trail construction to interpretation and stewardship efforts. Examples included treating 365 acres of Long Branch State Park for invasive plant species; repairing and repainting 15 picnic tables, 12 benches, and 60 grills at St. Joe State Park; leading nearly 1,700 tours at Rock Bridge Memorial State Park; and working to build an accessible pathway at Battle of Lexington State Historic Site.
State Parks Youth Corps (SPYC) is administered by Missouri’s Workforce Investment Boards in partnership with the Missouri Department of Natural Resources’ Division of State Parks and the Missouri Department of Economic Development’s Division of Workforce Development. In 2013, Missouri State Parks Youth Corps was accepted as a part of the 21st Century Conservation Service Corps (21CSC).