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Toyota Donation to Support Environmental Leadership at Yosemite National Park and UC Merced

September 29, 2008


$600,000 and five Prius donated by Toyota to Yosemite National Park



Toyota Gift

Yosemite National Park, Calif. - Toyota is providing more
than $600,000 and five hybrid vehicles to Yosemite National Park to
support a number of environmental education programs at Yosemite
and the University of California, Merced, it was announced today.

“The development of environmental education programs is key to
preserving our majestic national parks for future generations,”
said Bill Duff, Corporate Manager, Environmental Office, Toyota
Motor Sales, U.S.A., Inc. “Toyota is proud to be part of this
endeavor through our donation to The Yosemite Fund and Yosemite
National Park.”

The donation was facilitated through the park’s nonprofit
fundraising partner, The Yosemite Fund. The park will use Toyota’s
contribution to support the Yosemite Leadership Program (YLP), a
partnership between Yosemite, UC Merced and California State Parks.
The internship program provides students with work experience in a
park, wilderness education, a living stipend and the opportunity
for possible future employment with the park. In addition, Toyota
funds are being used to refurbish cabins in the park to be used as
dorms for the interns.

“We are grateful for Toyota’s generous support of these key
educational programs in Yosemite,” said Mike Tollefson, Yosemite
National Park Superintendent. “Toyota’s grants, received through
our partnership with the Yosemite Fund, ensure that parks and wild
places remain relevant to future generations by providing access to
higher learning and residential internships in one of America’s
flagship parks.”

The Wilderness Center on the campus of UC Merced was established
in part with funds from the Toyota donation. As the home base of
the Yosemite Leadership Program, the Wilderness Center fosters a
wilderness ethic among students, as well as assists students and
faculty with planning for trips to Yosemite and other national
parks and forests. Students staffing the center are also paid
through a fund developed with Toyota’s grant.

“Working as partners with the National Park Service,
institutions of higher learning and nonprofits, Toyota’s generous
contribution advances leadership and education opportunities to
protect and preserve Yosemite National Park,” said Bob Hansen,
president, The Yosemite Fund. “The breadth of their contributions
provides the resources to inspire new generations to develop an
interest in conservation, environmental management and a passion
for the outdoors.”

Toyota’s donation will also be used to establish a two-week
Executive Leadership Seminar in 2009 designed specifically for
experienced professionals in park and protected area land
management. Leaders from government, corporate, and non-profit
sectors will focus on proactive approaches and strategic leadership
for use in complex, real-world land management challenges. This
course draws on the University of California’s academic leadership,
and pairs it with the unparalleled opportunity for field study and
experiential learning in Yosemite National Park.

In addition to the monetary donation, Yosemite will receive five
Toyota Prius hybrid vehicles, which will be used to support
Yosemite’s air quality, bear management, wilderness education,
search and rescue and visitor services.

The donation to Yosemite National Park is part of a $5 million
contribution from Toyota in support of five National Parks and the
National Park Foundation to enhance environmental leadership and
educational programs at parks around the country. The company is
also donating 23 vehicles in total to the national parks.

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