2016 Year in Review

With your help, we shattered our 2016 service goals. This year alone, Wilderness Inquiry brought 36,233 people outside including 18,016 people of color and 3,235 people with disabilities through 565 adventures and events. This is a 10% increase in people served over 2015.

Highlights of a record breaking year include:

Canoemobile reached 30,000 people in 56 cities from coast to coast:
In 2016, Canoemobile visited new places such as Santa Barbara, Denver, Jacksonville, St. Louis, and Portland, ME. Canoemobile expanded throughout Minnesota with new school partnerships in Rochester, Saint Cloud, Duluth, Tower, Virginia, Thief River Falls, East Grand Forks and Mankato. Canoemobile engages a wide range of people from outdoor recreation and disability advocate Aimee Copeland to Secretary of Interior Sally Jewell. Read more about Canoemobile.

Canoemobile provides a floating classroom for all.

Outdoor Career Academy’s inaugural year prepared 47 youth for employment:
With support from the Bigelow Foundation, Wilderness Inquiry began the Outdoor Career Academy to support employment in the outdoor industry for underserved youth. This year, 47 youth (ages 16-19) graduated from the Academy where they gained skills in leadership, team building and facilitation. They also earned certifications in Leave No Trace and First Aid. Twenty graduates went on to work in paid outdoor related jobs. Others participated as interns on WI trips from Glacier to the Mississippi River.

Outdoor Career Academy provides employment training for underserved youth.

Connected new immigrants to America’s Best Idea:
Nine Somali-American boys from Ka Joog experienced Minnesota’s winter at its best on a Boundary Waters Wilderness Adventure. During August, eight Somali-American women experienced many firsts in Yellowstone National Park.

Somali-American youth explore the wonders of Yellowstone National Park.

Continued to change the game of outdoor access for people with disabilities: With support from Toad&Co and the National Park Foundation, Canoemobile reached more than 1,000 people with disabilities in 12 cities across the United States. We continued to work with disability service organizations from all over the country, including: Search Inc., Jackson Community Entry and Living Well Disability Services. Finally, we partnered with Current Designs to develop the next generation of sea kayaks designed with Wilderness Inquiry trips and participants in mind. We’re proud to partner with their team to design a kayak that is stable and accessible for all.

Access for All!

Earned Charity Navigator’s 4-Star Rating for the sixth time: The charity review organization has once again designated Wilderness Inquiry as exceptional, “indicating that Wilderness Inquiry outperforms most other charities in America and consistently executes its mission in a fiscally responsible way.”

We couldn’t have reached so many people without the support of our many partners and friends. We are very grateful to you and look forward to Sharing the Adventure with people of all ages, backgrounds, and abilities in 2017. 

Photo by Rani Jacobson

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