Impact on Lives and Landscapes

Youth conservation corps don’t just conserve Colorado’s land, water, and energy resources – they change lives.

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In 2018, here was our impact on Lives:


Of corpsmembers belonged to an ethnic minority


Of our members came from low-income households


Of corpsmembers had no prior work experience

  • 244 corpsmembers earned First Aid and CPR certifications
  • 112 corpsmembers earned Wilderness First Aid or Wilderness First Responder certifications
  • 251 corpsmembers certified in S-212 Wildland Fire Chainsaws
  • 52 corpsmembers certified as wildland firefighters

And in 2018, here was our impact on Land:


Hazard trees removed from forests, riparian areas, and campgrounds


Miles of trail built or maintained

  • 6,252 acres treated for harmful invasives
  • 1,000 acres treated for urgent risk of wildfire
  • 20,393 CFL high-efficiency light bulbs installed
  • 1,805 residents received energy and water-saving measures in their homes
  • 119 trail bridges constructed
  • 41 miles of fencing constructed, maintained, or removed
  • 9,413 trees planted
  • 108 campgrounds restored
  • 1,642 aerators installed
  • 791 high-efficiency shower heads installed
  • 665 high-efficiency toilets installed

Energy and water savings from these measures is equivalent to taking 400 cars off the road and 12.8 million gallons of water saved – equivalent of 18.8 Olympic-size pools of water!

Since Our Founding:

$30 Million

Raised to support conservation efforts by corps in Colorado


Miles of trail built or maintained by corps


Miles of fence built or maintained by corps


Square miles conserved


Value of CYCA’s AmeriCorps grants that have provided more than 3,000 Education Awards collectively for future tuition or to pay down existing student loans

Additional Report Statistics

“The economic benefits of Great Outdoors Colorado and the Conservation Trust Fund” by The Trust for Public Land, January 2018

Great Outdoors Colorado (GOCO) has invested $1 million each year in corps since 2011; as of January 2018:

  • 321 projects complete
  • 50 miles of trail construction
  • 85 miles of trail improvements
  • 100 miles of fencing construction and maintenance
  • 13,600 trees planted
  • 200 acres of invasive tamarisk mitigation

From 2011 to 2016, TPL conservatively estimates that the GOCO/CYCA partnership has resulted in the following savings to communities through the GOCO investment in corps:

  • $127,000 for trail construction
  • $216,000 for trail maintenance
  • $67,100 for fence construction
  • $264,000 for fence maintained
  • $40,700 for trees planted
  • $46,000 for hazard trees removed
  • $711,000 for tamarisk removed
  • $1,471,800 in total savings to local communities over 6 year period

2013 Public Lands Service Coalition Evaluation Report, Winter 2013, Brigham Young University and North Carolina State University

As a result of their corps program experience:

  • Corpsmembers’ growth over comparison group was 369% in community engagement
  • 386% more growth in environmental engagement
  • 569% more growth in leadership
  • 248% more growth in self-responsibility
  • 336% more growth in critical thinking
  • Corpsmembers identified the opportunity to gain new knowledge and skills as most important to them about their experience
  • Corpsmembers demonstrated growth in interest in obtaining additional education
  • Corpsmembers demonstrated growth in confidence to gain employment

2012 Public Lands Service Coalition Evaluation Report, Winter 2012, Brigham Young University and North Carolina University

As a result of their corps program experience, corpsmembers’ growth over the comparison group was 400% higher in community engagement, teamwork, leadership, and critical thinking.

“Conservation Corps Project Analysis”, Fall 2012, conducted by Booz Allen Hamilton on behalf of National park Service Facility Management Division

  • On average, using conservation crews instead of NPS crews saved 65%
  • The savings using conservation corps instead of contractor crews showed an average savings of 83% and over $130,000 per project
  • In general, conservation corps crews were consistently the least expensive alternative