The White House Kitchen Garden will be maintained and preserved into the future, thanks to a $2.5 million donation from the Burpee Foundation and the W. Atlee Burpee Company to the National Park Foundation, the official charity of America’s national parks. The donation, part of the National Park Foundation’s $350 million Centennial Campaign for America’s National Parks, was announced in early October during an event with First Lady Michelle Obama at President’s Park (White House).
“The South Lawn vegetables, fruits, and herbs inspire people across the country to eat locally, mindfully, and healthfully,” said George Ball, chairman and CEO of the W. Atlee Burpee Company. “Burpee is proud to continue our long history of inspiring gardeners by supporting the White House Kitchen Garden in one of America’s treasured national parks.”
First planted by First Lady Michelle Obama in 2009, the garden is maintained by the National Park Service as it is located in President’s Park (White House), one of America’s more than 400 national parks.
“America’s national parks are a collection of unique elements and experiences. The future of these special places is dependent on vibrant and robust public private partnerships,” said Will Shafroth, president of the National Park Foundation. “Through their generous support, the Burpee Foundation and the W. Atlee Burpee Company gifts as sole supporters are ensuring that the White House Kitchen Garden will continue to demonstrate the importance of getting outside to garden and be healthy as we enter the second century of the National Park Service.”
As part of its Congressional charter, the National Park Foundation partners with the National Park Service to identify priority projects in need of support across the National Park System. In this capacity, the Foundation is seeking to raise $350 million for programs and projects designed to protect America’s special places, connect people from all backgrounds to parks, and inspire future generations of national park stewardship. To date, the Foundation has raised more than $300 million toward this goal.
The First Lady planted the White House Kitchen Garden to help start a national conversation about the health and well-being of our children and our nation. It eventually led to the Let’s Move! Initiative in 2010 which is dedicated to helping kids and families lead healthier lives. Gardens, specifically the White House Kitchen Garden, are meant to bring people together, give everyone a chance to work with and learn from each other, and form a stronger, more connected community.
ABOUT THE NATIONAL PARK FOUNDATION
The National Park Foundation is the official charity of America’s national parks and nonprofit partner to the National Park Service. Chartered by Congress in 1967, the National Park Foundation raises private funds to help PROTECT more than 84 million acres of national parks through critical conservation and preservation efforts, CONNECT all Americans with their incomparable natural landscapes, vibrant culture and rich history, and INSPIRE the next generation of park stewards. In 2016, commemorating the National Park Service’s 100th anniversary, the Foundation launched The Centennial Campaign for America’s National Parks, a $350 million comprehensive fundraising campaign to strengthen and enhance the future of these national treasures for the next hundred years. Find out more and become a part of the national park community at www.nationalparks.org.