This award recognizes innovative and successful strategies for promoting and increasing trail use and understanding.
Cleveland Metroparks Trail Ambassador Volunteer Program helps provide an exceptional guest experience by interacting with the public to provide assistance, guidance, and education.
Cleveland Metroparks in Ohio serves over 44 million visitors annually. The 23,000+ acre park district is open 365 days per year. The park has 300 miles of trails, including all-purpose trails, hiking trails, and bridle paths. Volunteers with the Trail Ambassador program help provide an exceptional guest experience by interacting with the public to provide assistance, guidance, and education.
The program was launched in 2005 as part of the Cleveland Foundation’s Successful Aging Initiative. The program was developed to provide a unique, outdoor, active, and ongoing volunteer opportunity for individuals age 50+. Eligibility later expanded to include participants over the age of 30.
The program is an innovative and successful strategy to engage and educate both volunteers and the public. The program builds rapport between the public and Cleveland Metroparks through positive guest interaction and enriches the lives of program participants. The experiences gained from participants illustrate the many positive impacts of trails.