Youth Education and Stewardship (YES!)

Engaging youth through outdoor educational experiences

Inspiring the next generation of outdoor stewards

SVC’s YES program connects kids to the natural environment, on properties we have protected, allowing kids to experience and explore the outdoors while creating lifelong memories.

YES activities integrate STEM curriculum, the principals of Leave No Trace promoting environmental awareness in kids and teach kids to become stewards of their environment. Each year, SVC hosts more than 4,000 youth at Deer Creek Hills and Camp Pollock. SVC has a goal to reach even more under-served youth. Through local partnerships with youth summer camps and after school programs we reach more kids and maximize our efforts.

SVC’s partnerships with Sierra Nevada Journeys, Project Lifelong, Sheriff’s Community Impact Program, Sierra Club and Inspiring Connections Outdoors, Community Collaborative Charter School, scout groups, and local Parks Districts and Community Centers, allow us to get more kids out to explore the natural world and value important resources in their backyards.

Beautiful and Unique Properties

Deer Creek Hills Preserve is one of Sacramento County’s largest nature preserves.

Project YES activities are offered at Deer Creek Hills, Sacramento’s largest open-space preserve with 4,600 acres of rangeland, oak woodlands, grasslands and seasonal creeks. Deer Creek Hills Preserve is open to the public on Saturdays from 9am-1pm from February through May and from October through November for self-guided hikes. Hike the marked one of three marked trails on your own, or for a chance to explore more of the property, join one of our many guided educational hikes, led year-round by our Volunteer Docents.

SVC’s trained docents lead guided tours and hikes featuring botany, birding, geology, history, stargazing and more. Visit the Events page to check out the upcoming hike schedule and RSVP to attend.

Camp Pollock is located in Sacramento in the heart of the Lower American River Parkway.

Camp Pollock is now open to the public for day use and picnicking, with river access, a native garden, courtyard, historic lodge and offers primitive camp sites. The Lodge, Deck and Courtyard are rentable for private and public events and parties. Overnight Camping is available for organized educational groups and youth groups, who have an educational or interpretive interest in the parkway and its resources. Or join us for a group Camp or “Glamp” out for an opportunity to sleep under the stars, while staying close to home.

Get your hands dirty and learn more about local habitats by volunteering on a Saturday Service Project at Camp Pollock. Held on two Saturdays each month from 9am-1pm, volunteers team up with docents and staff to accomplish tasks including: painting, planting, weed removal, construction, fence building, outreach, and other maintenance projects.

For more information on YES, contact Program Coordinator Carly Amatisto at or 916-612-3719.

five girls wearing backpacks


Guided hikes include geology, pollinators, stargazing, history, birding, yoga, wildflower, and more!

three kids in a tent


Join an SVC group camping event or book your own for $4 per person.

group of people holding gardening tools


Get your hands dirty and give back to the environment.

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