Learning To Ascend
The name of my organization that I am creating for my term project is called Learning To Ascend. Learning to Ascend provides outdoor education through outdoor activities such as climbing, river rafting, land navigation; Children from ages 12 to 18, either at-risk or recovering from severe illness, will learn leadership and teamwork skills that will be essential for them to use throughout their life.
By taking outdoor sports and utilizing them as an outlet for children who normally do not or have not been able to participate in them due to their living situations. Taking kids out of the classroom and engaging them in on hands activities where they will increase their confidence as well as learn about nature and the environment in a setting that teaches them skills that can be used in all aspects of life. This organization seeks to empower children to “Ascend” to new heights that they never thought possible due to their current constraints.
Describe what you’ll be doing as part of this project. Due to my experience, I would place myself as the Program Coordinator and Volunteer Recruitment. I am certified as a belayer for rock climbing, white water river guiding, and have been taught land navigation through the military as well as being a former boy scout.
What specific skills do you want to develop? The specific skills that I would want to develop specifically would be in the areas of fundraising and grant-writing because they are critical needs areas for a Nonprofit Organization such as Learning To Ascend. I intend to specifically get better at public speaking and public relations as well as grant writing. I also would like to enhance my abilities in the event planning as it will crucial for fundraising events.
I also need to have a better grasp of understanding on Insurance/Liability Coverage for this type of Nonprofit as I understand that it is necessary due to potential risks for such activities like rock climbing and white water rafting. Another area in need that is related to my project will be the actual integration of attracting participants from communities as local school districts would likely be hesitant to get involved.
The below organizations have some similarities as the organization I am focusing on building, and have used them as a starting point.
First Descents is a similar organization except that they provide the services to young adult cancer survivors. What they do is: “First Descents offers young adult cancer fighters and survivors a free outdoor adventure experience designed to empower them to climb, paddle and surf beyond their diagnosis, defy their cancer, reclaim their lives and connect with others doing the same.” (www.firstdescents.org)
Below is a link to their website for more information
Another organization that is much similar in the participants is Anchors Away Program which is actually located in Charleston, SC. What they do is:
Since 1995, the program has worked to do away with the ‘anchors’ that have traditionally limited people with disabilities, at risk youth and the elderly in the South Carolina area. The Anchors Away Program serves all types of abilities and gender/age/race populations. A person with a disability is anyone who does not have equal access, or ability, to utilize the same recreational resources that are available to a majority of the community. Through activities such as skiing, fishing, and sailing, the Anchors Away Program creates opportunity, raises awareness, and gets people out on the water.” (www.anchorsawayprogram.org)
Here is the link to their website:
My goal is to provide this outlet to teenagers, but not only to those who are fighting cancer, but in all aspects, provide outdoor activities to enable able bodied children the opportunity to participate in activities that they are unable to partake in due to disease or living situation. Under normal settings, the type of areas that will be taught could cost hundreds of dollars by themselves or thousands of dollars at an Outdoor School such as NOLS. By providing this unique learning opportunity, kids will get a jump start on building life skills that can utilized for the rest of their lives.