CHEYENNE - In order to enhance camp opportunities for 2014, the Wyoming Game and Fish Department will suspend this year’s Youth Conservation Camp and Forever Wild Educator Workshops (formerly Outdoor Recreation Education Opportunities).
During a meeting in Casper Jan. 22-24, the camp planning team within Game and Fish decided to take a year off from the two camps. Services Division Chief Mark Konishi said that the team came to the decision after much deliberation.
“During the team’s conversations, the need for significant changes quickly became apparent,” Konishi said. “Team members agreed that the time had come to reconsider camp structures and make strategic decisions to enable the department to provide camp participants with the best-possible experiences.”
The time and resources usually allocated for planning and conducting the camps will be redirected into making facilities safer and camp content more relevant.
“Game and Fish employees are passionately dedicated to providing top-notch conservation education statewide,” Konishi said. The department’s new recruitment and retention effort, Forever Wild Family Workshops, has been selected as a nationwide pilot program by the Wildlife Management Institute.
Tasha Sorensen, conservation education specialist, has been directing the Forever Wild Family Workshops.
“Our 2014 camps for youth and educators will incorporate some of the measurable results we’ve gained and best practices we’ve discovered through the Forever Wild Family Workshops.”
“Family lives are becoming busier and parents have higher expectations for their children's educational experiences,” said Jaimel Blajszczak, interim information/publications supervisor, who assisted in directing the planning meeting.The annual Becoming an Outdoor Woman Workshop, June 14-16, and the Hunter Education New Instructor Academy, July 19-21, will be held as scheduled. (Select “Education” at wgfd.wyo.gov for information on these opportunities.)
In a typical year, Game and Fish provides four camping opportunities each summer:
• Through the Forever Wild Educator Workshops (formerly Outdoor Recreation Education Opportunities), educators gain hands-on outdoor skills and wildlife expertise that they, in turn, pass on to their students. Next offered: Summer 2014.
• Becoming an Outdoors Woman introduces women 18 and older to hunting, fishing, and other recreational experiences and helps them refine their outdoor skills. Next offered: June 14-16, 2013.
• The Hunter Education New Instructor Academy, offered once a year, is mandated by the Wyoming Game and Fish Commission for new volunteer hunter education instructors. Next offered: June 19-21, 2013.
• Youth Conservation Camp provides youth ages 14-17 the opportunity to learn about conservation, engage in new outdoor pursuits and enhance their outdoor skills. Next offered: Summer 2014.
(Contact: Tristanna Bickford (307) 777-4542)