External Affairs Manager Rob Sendak reflects on building meaningful partnerships with existing Coalition stakeholders and welcoming in new members.
As the days are now beginning to get longer, my mind drifts towards summer while I sift through charts and maps of trails and waterways that are yet unknown (to me anyway) in the state of Washington. I normally get to take an overnight kayaking trip up in the San Juan Islands every August, and my planning begins now.
With trail and wilderness exploration on my mind, my work with the Coalition feels even more important than ever. This past month, the Coalition leaned into some nonprofit partnerships and welcomed some new WWRC members with open arms: the Northwest Avalanche Center and the Student Conservation Association. Both groups will attend our Legislative Day on February 13th. We are so very proud to have these great organizations as stakeholders advocating for the Washington Wildlife & Recreation Program. SCA’s mission is “to build the next generation of conservation leaders and inspire lifelong stewardship of the environment and communities by engaging young people in hands-on service to the land.” I’m not sure if I can think of a better mission statement than that.
Two other notable stakeholder collaborations this month took place with the Mountaineers and Islandwood. Having had the opportunity to go out to Bainbridge Island a few years ago and attend a meeting on Islandwood’s campus, I can tell you firsthand how impactful their programming is with kids. They are able to propel our youth into a different stratosphere in the outdoor education environment. And the Mountaineers….all Washingtonians know about this group, and their advocacy efforts are starting to be recognized on a national level. The Mountaineers have been longtime WWRC partners and have helped the Coalition recently by promoting our sign-on letter, which was sent to Governor Inslee in November recommending WWRP be funded at $120 million. We are still encouraging sign-ons, and are now over 1400 signatures strong! The Mountaineers also aided the Coalition by promoting our Legislative Day on February 13th. There are still a few spots available to advocate during our Leg Day—so come to Olympia, meet with your elected official,s and let them know why you believe funding the WWRP is so important! You can register here: http://bit.ly/LegDay2017.
Many thanks go out to all of these Coalition stakeholders for the work they do getting more folks outside, while taking care of the places where Washingtonians love to play. The hard work does not go unnoticed and the Coalition is very grateful for these efforts. These organizations are a part of the heart and soul of the Coalition…their members use the trails, waterways and parks that are so important to all of us that call Washington state our home. Thanks for supporting the Coalition and for advocating for WWRP!