Environmental Restoration Teams (ERT)


Career opportunities are important to urban youth of color where unemployment remains more than double the national average. The OBA ERT program provides short- to longer-term urban and trail paying positions for dropouts, veterans and youth just out of high school where they can learn basic work skills and work ethics. ERT is a sub-program of Careers in Conservation.

Land Management AgenciesOBA has helped a multitude of youth and adults find temporary and permanent work with outdoor agencies, including the National Park Service, Bureau of Land Management, US Forest Service, Mountains Recreation Conservation Authority, City of Pasadena Parks and Natural Resources, Mountains Restoration Trust, Sierra Club, National Parks Conservation Association, Los Angeles Conservation Corps, REI, NorthEast Trees, Altadena Foothills Conservancy and of course OBA.

Santa Monica MountainsArea restoration and maintenance is important, for over a decade OBA has maintained collaborative agreements with the Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy and the Mountains Restoration Trust to provide summer youth work restoration teams.

PWP – Pasadena Water and Power Department annually offers positions to OBA youth to inform city residents of water conservation and energy savings programs and to provide audits of energy use by small businesses.

Natural Resources and Stewardship Academy (NRSA)


A year-round series of experiential trips and courses that engage participants in environmental education, conservation and career education.  These courses are one-day, weekend and extended summer trips that go to a variety of locations and enhance our participants understanding of flora, fauna, geology and weather and stewardship responsibility both in wilderness and community.  For some, they can lead to volunteer and paid work experience that enhances the resumes of our youth and allow them to effectively compete against others for wilderness jobs and careers.  NRSA programs begin with a family camping experience and progress to extended youth outings and youth and young adult crew employment and career pathways projects.

Teach Me to Camp (TMTC)

This family camping program introduces urban families who have never experienced the out-of-doors as a unit to the wilderness and the basics of camping. The initiatives for TMTC trips are designed to teach families to set goals and clarify values. Families are instructed in all of the basic of camping while learning about how they can get in the out of doors on their own. Currently OBA offers the following under TMTC:

Santa Monica Mountains — Currently OBA runs an open TMTC program (open to all community agencies) but limited by funding at locations in the local Santa Monica Mountains.

Coachella Valley – Under the Public Lands Education Project OBA offers TMTC to three agencies in Coachella and Thermal.

Youth Advisory Council (YAC)


The YAC program is dedicated to increasing the leadership skills of community youth and providing OBA with a pool of talented, dedicated individuals who will ultimately become staff. The program helps to keep a youth-centric perspective throughout OBA programming and training. The YAC offers the opportunity for youth who have participated in a course to continue their involvement in OBA. The YAC follow a rigorous self-structured curriculum dedicated to upgrading leadership skills through fundraising, public speaking and environmental education. Youth plan their own trips, learning activities and participate in OBA staff training programs.