2016 Wilson Community Growth Grant Winner announced


February 9, 2016, Philadelphia, PA -- The Wilson Family, in partnership with Orienteering USA, is pleased to introduce Madison School Forest Orienteering Program (MSFOP) as the winner of the inaugural Wilson Community Growth Grant. This grant seeks to develop and help implement programs that expand access to orienteering for youth.

Under the direction of program manager Susie Madden, an orienteering enthusiast and Orienteering USA member, and Madison School & Community Recreation (MSCR) Recreation Specialist Emily Peffer, the MSFOP will create an orienteering map of the School Forest, set two permanent courses there, and create training materials for MSCR staff. The Madison Metropolitan School District (MMSD) Curriculum and Instruction department and MSCR will also provide resources to support the full cost of the program. Additionally, MSCR will provide equipment and operational support for construction and sustainability of this exciting program.

The Madison School Forest is a 307-acre forest which provides environmental education programs to over 27,000 MMSD students. In addition to offering many recreation programs for all ages at affordable prices, MSCR collaborates with MMSD to offer experiential and environmental programs at the School Forest. Beginning in 2016, MSCR will operate summer programs for underserved populations which offer environmental and experiential programs, including orienteering, for hundreds of children in the School Forest.

Ms. Madden is a leader in the local orienteering education community. She has been the lead organizer of numerous MSCR and Badger Orienteering Club events for both youth and adults. Additionally, Madden created a permanent orienteering course at Lincoln Elementary School, including teacher training and materials for ongoing use of the program.

This award honors the memory of Iain Wilson. Iain would be thrilled with how many new orienteers will get their first exposure to the sport through the Madison School Forest Orienteering Program. The efforts of Ms. Madden, MSCR, and MMSD represent the spirit of service and teamwork that Iain stood for.

Writes Glen Schorr, Executive Director of Orienteering USA, “This innovative program makes orienteering accessible to youth who represent the orienteers of the future. We are thrilled to work with MSCR and MMSD to create a sustainable, community-supported offering.”

Grantees are selected through a competitive application and review process. Iain’s father Graeme writes, “The worldwide community of orienteering has touched so many lives. Any opportunity to bring young people into the woods and offer tools for sport and life would make Iain proud.”

Press Release (PDF)

About Orienteering USA

As the sport’s national federation, Orienteering USA represents thousands of orienteers throughout the country.

About Wilson Community Growth Grant

The Wilson Community Growth Grant seeks to develop and help implement programs aimed at expanding access to orienteering for youth. It is part of the Iain Wilson Awards, which were established in 2013 to support the efforts of young orienteers. Learn more at http://www.orienteeringusa.com/wilsongrant