North River Family YMCA To Expand Outdoor Youth Development Opportunities In Chattanooga

Monday, July 8, 2013

The North River Family YMCA has launched a new outdoor adventure program for youth in grades six through 12, designed to provide opportunities to build team leadership skills, self-confidence and self-awareness through challenging outdoor activities.  

The BOLD /GOLD (Boys and Girls Outdoor Leadership Development) program offers canoeing, rock climbing and backpacking expeditions.

The North River Family YMCA is one of six Ys selected nationwide to receive a grant to launch BOLD/GOLD programs in their communities, thanks to generous donations to the national resource office for the nation’s Ys (YMCA of the USA) from the REI Foundation; the McKibben Merner Family Foundation; the Youth Outdoor Legacy Fund; and private donors Matt Hyde and Lisa Beaudreau, and Doug and Maggie Walker. 

The primary goal of BOLD/GOLD is to reduce and remove barriers for all youth and teens, regardless of experience, ethnicity or socio-ecomonic status, to enjoy access to the outdoors  through wilderness adventure and to build leadership values and skills. The program evolved from a successful afterschool leadership club offered by the YMCA of Greater Seattle at local YMCA branches and middle schools.  “In 2006, as part of the afterschool club, we offered a backpacking expedition to the Alpine Lakes Wilderness and it proved so popular that demand and interest just kept growing,” stated Andrew Jay, director of the program for the YMCA of Greater Seattle.  “By 2010 more than 30 backpacking, rock climbing and mountaineering expeditions involving more than 300 youth were scheduled.”

Daniel Kadwell, program director at the North River Family YMCA said the North River Y, looks forward to building on Seattle’s success.  “Programs like BOLD/GOLD help the Y provide so many of the assets kids need to become successful adults, such as a sense of belonging, supportive relationships with adults, opportunities to enhance decision-making and leadership skills, and a sense of safety.  We look forward to sharing and expanding the BOLD/GOLD program here in Chattanooga and are grateful to all of the foundation and individual donors who made this grant possible.  Because of their generosity, we can connect many deserving boys and girls to the great outdoors so they can learn, grow and thrive - both in nature and in life.”  

John Duntley, Senior Camping specialist and National BOLD/GOLD Program liaison, believes the benefits are long-lasting.  “We are confident that the Ys that were selected will effectively pilot the BOLD/GOLD program at their Ys and in their communities to help develop young people into future leaders.” 

Grant funding will enable participating Ys, including the North River Family Y, to provide financial assistance for teens to participate in BOLD/GOLD programs regardless of family income.

The North River Family YMCA invites local support for this new youth outreach program that it plans to build to be sustainable for years to come as a positive youth development effort for the community.   



Reflection Riding Holds Spring Native Plant Sale This Weekend

Reflection Riding is holding its Spring Native Plant Sale selling the region's best selection of trees, shrubs, and perennials.  Here is the schedule: Friday: 10 a.m.-7 p.m. - Public Sale Saturday: 10 a.m.-7 p.m. - Public Sale and Earth Day Festival.  Native plants, grown for a variety of garden conditions, are beautiful, sustainable, and contribute ... (click for more)

TWRA Congratulates Tennessee Wildlife Federation On Award

A strong advocate for the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency, the Tennessee Wildlife Federation has been honored with a prestigious national award. The Federation has been named the 2018 Affiliate of the Year by the National Wildlife Federation in recognition of its outstanding achievement in promoting conservation of wildlife and natural resources on the state and national level. ... (click for more)

Robert Gillisse Was Pilot Killed In Plane Crash At Collegedale Airport

The pilot who was killed in a plane crash on the runway of the Collegedale Airport on Friday evening has been identified as Robert Gillisse, 62, of Ooltewah . Charles Swain, who is the director of the airport, said the plane was a total loss. It was a single-occupant plane. He said the plane was taking off when it crashed. He said Mr. Gillisse frequently had flown out of ... (click for more)

East Ridge To Build Open-Air Pavilion Near City Hall

East Ridge plans to construct an open-air pavilion that will include restrooms and a concession area near City Hall and the old McBrien School.  It will be part of a Town Center for East Ridge at the Tombras Avenue property. The city is also applying for a $500,000 grant to help convert Pioneer Park into a refurbished park with a splash pad. The firm of Hefferlin and ... (click for more)

A Tribute For My Brother – Sgt. Jonathan Gardner, U.S. Army

Seven years ago today, my family and I found out that my brother, Sgt. Jonathan D. Gardner, was seriously injured by a roadside bomb, (explosively formed penetrator - EFP), while on a mission in Kuwait. The EFP went through the bottom of his seat and put a softball size hole in his upper thigh. The doctors said that if the bomb had entered the Humvee an inch to the right, he ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: The Saturday Funnies

All of us who marvel at the sound of bagpipes at a funeral realize the majesty that people like piper Scottie Maclellan can lend to any “homecoming” and for years there has been a wonderful tale out of Nova Scotia that leads this week’s parade of The  Saturday  Funnies. Mind you, I do not write these stories, as many who have followed man’s laughter down through the ... (click for more)