Did you know that Virginia has historically ranked last (50th) among the states in terms of state per capita spending on the state park system? In 2013, Virginia moved up a bit in the rankings and placed 43rd, a dubious distinction to be sure but better than the position of "last" held in prior years.
And, did you know that despite being severely underfunded and understaffed, the overall state and local economic impact generated by the state park system in Calendar Year 2014 was about $208 million -- more than 12 times the $17.7 million general Fund appropriation for state park systems operations?
Also, did you know that Virginia citizens, recognizing the unmet needs of the state park system, contributed more than 246,000 volunteer hours of support to the state park system. The park system valued this volunteer support as being the equivalent of $5.7 million.
Join us to help support Virginia's state parks!
The Virginia Association for Parks (VAFP) is the nonprofit umbrella organization for the respective citizen support groups (Friends Groups) and individual volunteers supporting the 36 state parks, 61 state natural areas, and the 22 national parks, monuments, and historic sites located across the Commonwealth.
VAFP is unique in that we know of no other organization that is working towards the goal of a "seamless" park system from a user perspective. Our view is that "a park is a park" regardless of the funding source-national, state, regional, or local.
In keeping with that view, VAFP is supportive of all parks within the Commonwealth. We advocate for park issues at the local, state, and national levels and seek funds through tax deductible gifts, grants, contributions, and other mechanisms to support our operations and invest in parks. We also offer free technical advice and assistance to those who wish to form new citizen support organizations. And, we conduct semi-annual conferences that include training sessions and networking opportunities to exchange ideas.
Please join us and help support Virginia's parks. We have several levels of membership: Associate Member, Sustaining Member, Silver Member, Gold Member, and Platinum Member. All dues are deductible for income tax computation purposes.
A VAFP Associate Membership is free. By joining the online community at VirginiaOutdoors, you will automatically receive periodic emails and updates on activities and opportunities to volunteer and support your parks. This community also allows you to select targeted information for your favorite destinations, activities or programs.
Click here to sign up for a Free Associate Membership to VAFP.
A Sustaining Membership conveys all the benefits of the free membership plus conveys the privilege of voting on all key issues and decisions as well as the opportunity to serve on committees, including the Executive Committee. Annual dues for this level membership are $10 for individuals and $20 for organizations.
Enroll in an individual Sustaining Membership using PayPal by clicking the button below:
Enroll in an Sustaining Membership as an organization using PayPal by clicking the button below:
Silver, Gold, and Platinum Memberships each convey the same privileges and opportunities as the Sustaining Membership. Additionally, the names of these members will be prominently displayed on the website to show their outstanding support for Virginia's parks.
Silver Membership dues range, at your choice, from $100 to $499 annually.
Gold Membership dues range, at your choice, from $500 to $999 annually.
Platinum Membership dues range, at your choice, from $1,000 and up.
To become a Silver, Gold or Platinum member using PayPal, click the button below. You will be asked to enter the dollar amount you wish to contribute, please review the membership levels above.
To join via postal mail, download the following form:
Find out more ways you can help parks in Virginia by visiting DCR Volunteerism Opportunities