Health, Wellness & Safety

Health & Wellness

Outdoor recreation has the undeniable ability to improve one’s emotional and physical wellbeing. The Regional Parks Foundation encourages healthy communities by supporting programming that connects people with nature and gets their bodies moving in the process.

Since 2012, we have been part of the Healthy Parks Healthy People: Bay Area initiative with programming such as Trails Challenge, Parks Rx, and SHINE (Stay Healthy in Nature Every Day). SHINE is an innovative program developed in partnership with UCSF Benioff Children's Hospital Oakland in which doctors prescribe time in nature as part of treatment for a variety of conditions. Each month, child patients and their families are transported from the hospital to an East Bay Regional Park where they enjoy a healthy lunch, guided educational walk, and healthful interactions with their physicians and Park District Interpretive team. The Foundation funds transportation, meals and a third-party independent evaluation of the program for future replication and expansion.

Many seniors experience mobility and financial limitations, lack of transportation, or other hurdles to park access. Recognizing the wellness benefits of socializing with peers in a natural environment, we fund accessibility projects, transportation, meals, and recreational activities in parks for seniors.

Multicultural Wellness Walks were launched in 2014 to invite and encourage communities that have been historically marginalized to come together for nature-based education, exercise, games, and to share healthy foods from a multitude of cuisines. The vision is to increase feelings of safety and comfort in these spaces so participants can feel confident returning to and exploring the Regional Parks on their own.


Each year the Foundation funds programs and safety equipment to protect park guests. 

The Share Our Trail program encourages different types of trail users to be aware of their surroundings and each other. Safety is promoted by giving out Foundation funded bike bells, reflective blinkers and tips for trail etiquette such as sounding a bell and slowing down for congested areas. 

Water safety is a priority for the park and for the Regional Parks Foundation. The Foundation provides swim lessons, aquatic camp scholarships, junior lifeguard programs, and life saving rescue equipment such as: loaner life jackets, rescue tubes and boards. Special outreach programs are also funded including Vamos a Aprender, high school swim programs for recent immigrants and boating safety education. 

The East Bay Regional Park District employs its own safety division including a fire department and police department with helicopter, K-9 and mounted horse patrol units. Donations to the Foundation helps necessary safety training and equipment:

  • Mobile Incident Command Center - for coordinated responses for rescues and emergencies
  • Large Animal Rescue Equipment and Training 
  • Mounted Horse Patrol - horses and horse trailer
  • Volunteer Trail Safety Patrol - helmets, vests, and safety literature

Donate now to support Health, Wellness and Safety programs.




  • Join us in celebrating the East Bay Regional Park District’s 90 years of milestones and history of environmental conservation and positive experiences in nature!

  • I notice how the hill has many dragonflies on it and how the crisp sunlight melts over the bugs, blending them in with cool shadows while the soft flowers come out from the damp forest floor. -Isla, Camper at Redwood Reinhardt Regional Park

  • East Bay Regional Parks are one of the best things about the Bay, I want everyone to be able to experience them. - Matt C., Member & Donor

  • This was the first field trip my students ever went on. The self-esteem, the joy and the fulfillment of being part of this special event supported growth and community life skills for each of my students! – Teacher at Turner Elementary in Antioch, Disability Fishing Derby Participant