Kampgrounds Of America Foundation Launches, Enhancing Long-Running Investment To Create Access To The Great Outdoors

Apr 12, 2023

Kampgrounds of America, Inc., the world’s largest system of privately-owned campgrounds, today announced the creation of a new foundation on the tail of its 60th year in business. Aimed at increasing the company’s already robust philanthropic efforts, the Kampgrounds of America Foundation serves as the charitable embodiment of the brand’s mission of connecting people to the outdoors and each other.

Kampgrounds of America Foundation funding will focus on three primary categories that meet this mission – accessibility to the outdoors, preservation and sustainability of the outdoors, and community initiatives where Kampgrounds of America campgrounds are and employees live. Kampgrounds of America, Inc. is committing 1% of pre-tax profit annually to fund the foundation, ensuring these initiatives are fulfilled. The Kampgrounds of American Foundation is a registered 501c(3) organization that will support nonprofit organizations with 501c(3) status and the foundation’s charitable activities.

“Giving back has been part of our DNA since we were founded over 60 years ago. The foundation’s formation solidifies our ability to make an impact, in both dollars and time, to our mission,” said Toby O’Rourke, CEO and president of Kampgrounds of America. “We are focused on increasing access to the outdoors, protecting natural spaces and improving quality of place in the communities where our campgrounds operate and our employees live.”

The foundation’s inaugural gift is to support the activation of The Get Out There Adventure Bag, which equips youth that lack access to the outdoors with essential gear so they can experience all that nature has to offer. The program, announced last year with the founding partnership of Anker Innovations and Kampgrounds of America, focuses on creating access to the outdoors for underrepresented youth. The work will support the creation and distribution of over 1000 bags to be produced and distributed to urban youth and their adult chaperones in the hopes of removing barriers to safely explore the great outdoors.  

“We are passionate about connecting people with nature and believe that everyone should have an opportunity to enjoy the great outdoors,” said O’Rouke. “The Get Out There Bag program is just one example of the many programs we will support and champion across the outdoor industry.

The Kampgrounds of America Foundation will supplement ongoing gifting efforts by Kampgrounds of America, Inc. One of the organization’s longest charitable relationships, Care Camps, will continue to receive one dollar of every sale of the company’s Kampgrounds of America Rewards loyalty program. Care Camps is a nonprofit that sends children affected by cancer and their families to oncology summer camps. Since being established by Kampgrounds of America campground owners in 1984, Kampgrounds of America, Inc. and its franchisees have contributed $16.9 million to Care Camps.

Many similar initiatives will still remain in place through the corporation’s giving frameworks. Headquartered in Billings, Montana, KOA, Inc. is a long-standing supporter of Montana Big Sky State Games, Montana Special Olympics, the US Bobsled and Skeleton teams, and Ponderosa Elementary School in Billings.

To learn more about the Kampgrounds of America Foundation, or make a giving request, go to KOA.com/foundation.