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Wildland Awareness And Educational Institute

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Environment, Environmental Education

Mission: Wildland awareness and educational institute is a colorado based conservation organization established to ignite a connection to the outdoors as a means to improve health and for the furtherance of our conservation heritage. Its innovative programs provide participants the opportunity to learn about and experience the joy of the outdoors through introductory courses that cover all aspects of our outdoor world. Workshops and courses are offered for women, families, 4h youth, and young adults / college students. No experience or equipment is necessary. Nature is important, essential, for adults and children in every major way - mentally, physically, academically - and wildland awareness and educational institute is doing its part in providing unforgettable nature experiences.

Programs: College student outdoor field skills courses. The course: 1)provides students the opportunity to gain workforce training in natural resource career fields and learn about and participate in outdoor pursuits; 2)is offered for 1-elective academic credit towards graduation as course fw111 through colorado state university; other universities forthcoming with the support of partner organizations; waei is continuing to target 15 colleges in colorado providing the opportunity to reach thousands of students annually; 3) consists of a multiple day course which includes pre and post lectures /discussions on campus; 4) is offered during the spring and fall semesters; with 2 to 4 courses offered annually per university; 85 students total per course; 8 to 16 students per individual class during the lab / weekend portion of the course. Strong evaluations are completed with each course. Reaching college-aged youth is critical to changing societal trends and improving health through being active in the out-of-doors. Research shows that programs that target youth age 6 to 17 have only a 0. 3 to 12% impact. Through reaching college students, the impact is 72 to 98% in change in behavior. Today's college students are also tomorrow's parents and as they engage in nature, they will have the ability to once again pass along outdoor traditions and healthy lifestyles to their children.

women's workshops: 1) provides women the opportunity to learn outdoor skills in a supportive atmosphere; 2)over 24 outdoor oriented activities are offered throughout the weekend, participants choose their top 4 choices; 3) the workshop is offered for 2. 2 continuing education units through colorado state university (csu) which counts towards teacher recertification through the colorado department of education; 4) the weekend workshop begins at noon on friday and ends at noon on sunday; provided in may and september annually, 50 participants per workshop, 12 participants per individual class. The workshop has been evaluated at the state and national level, has won national awards and in 2010 was given the award of excellence in higher education from the colorado alliance for environmental education. Reaching women is critical in changing societal trends and engaging youth in the outdoors as a means to improve mental, physical and academic health as women most often determine how leisure time is spent.

family and 4h workshops - the family and 4h youth workshops: 1) provide parents the ability to pass on our outdoor heritage and healthy, active lifestyles; 2) provide instruction to 4h youth and their parents on outdoor skills and animal care; 3) offer families the opportunity to learn together; 4) span half day to full day in length; 5) are provided up to twice per month with 5 to 45 participants per class; one parent per two children required. The classes are offered at low cost averaging $0 - $10 per participant which enables wildland awareness and educational institute the ability to reach low-income families. The design of the class follows the research by requiring parental participation as studies show that without parental participation, youth are not likely to engage in the outdoors and thus the ability to positively impact their health and way of life is not realized. By engaging parents, it is also more likely that a lifelong environmental ethic will develop.

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