HOPE Crew at Bandalier National Monument

photo by: Minesh Bacrania


Empowering a new generation of preservationists through Hands-On Preservation Experience

HOPE Crew: Hands-On Preservation Experience

Engaging a New Generation of Preservationists

Since 2014, HOPE Crew (which stands for Hands-On Preservation Experience) has completed 175 projects and trained more than 802 young people—including veterans—and engaged over 3,750 volunteers in historic preservation trades.

In the years since its founding, HOPE Crew has continued to train young people, while expanding its focus on rebuilding historic trades through research, and providing avenues for the use of digital tools to document and preserve historic places.

With your support, the program will continue to link preservation projects to local youth organizations and communities across the nation. It brings the potential for thousands participants to restore hundreds of historic sites, while learning preservation trade skills.

Your donation will help to empower a new generation of preservationists, who will learn preservation skills while saving places!

Donate Today

Preservation Experts Train Crew Members

To enable HOPE Crew to successfully complete rehabilitation projects at historic sites, we determine if the project could support a large-scale community volunteer effort or paid training opportunity for participants. Both project types leverage the National Trust’s broad network of partners and preservation experts to provide preservation guidance and trades expertise.

During paid training projects, a trades professional expert, paid through the project’s budget, helps train the crew on techniques like repointing, carpentry, and window restoration. We are always on the lookout for experts to add to our network. If you are interested in serving as either a trades expert or offering preservation guidance on an upcoming project, please submit your information.

Leading Partners in Rebuilding Historic Trades

Through collaboration with preservation organizations nationwide, the National Trust’s HOPE Crew is spearheading historic trades strategy from multiple angles.

In 2021 a joint partnership began between the National Preservation Partners Network and the National Trust for Historic Preservation. The Preservation Priorities Task Force touches on four key areas, one of which is the preservation trades. In addition to an issue brief focused on Preservation Trades and Workforce Development, the task force of state and local partners are developing an action plan to further support the repopulation of preservation tradespeople.

Beyond Preservation Trades

In addition to the preservation trades, HOPE Crew partnered with the National Park Service, the Advisory Council for Historic Preservation, and Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU) to acquaint architecture students with preservation and related career paths. Additionally, the HOPE Crew has created opportunities for HBCU students to learn the latest digital documentation techniques under the mentorship of practicing professionals in the field.

America's Past Preserved for the Future

HOPE Crews continue to preserve historic sites that exemplify to the breadth and depth of America’s past. From iconic civil rights monuments and Native American sacred sites to centuries-old cemeteries and battlefields, HOPE Crew offers enriching and tangible opportunities to connect us all to the past.