CHEYENNE - The famous song “With a little help from my friends” recently hit home with Wyoming’s Forever Wild Family Program.
The Wyoming Wildlife Federation donated $3,000 to help the program with its mission of providing mentored hunts and fishing trips for Wyoming families new to the outdoors.
“I know of no other program which exposes an entire family to Wyoming’s hunting/angling culture and skills with such thoroughness,” said Steve Kilpatrick, federation executive director. “We are honored to be a partner.”
“The program was in greatest need of big game rifles so six new Ruger rifles were purchased with the grant,” said Tasha Sorensen, Forever Wild Families coordinator for the Game and Fish Department. “The rifles will really help the big game hunting segment of the program.”
Guns and Gear of Cheyenne provided the rifles at their cost and donated scope rings. Plus, the shop mounted the scopes and bore-sighted the rifles for free. The 3-by-9 power scopes were provided at cost by Vortex Optics of Middleton, Wis.
The rifles – two each: 30.06, .270 and youth .243 – will first be used to help Cody-area Forever Wild families with their big game hunts in 2014.
“The Forever Wild Family Program offers customized outings to those with limited outdoor experience,” Sorensen adds. “Over the course of a year, families learn to hunt and fish through hands-on, intensive group experiences.”
The outings are led by Game and Fish staff and community members who help participants develop their outdoor skills and appreciate that starting learning to hunt and fish is a lifelong process. In the program’s second year, families are paired with community mentors who offer multiple opportunities in more advanced fishing, hunting and outdoor skills. Families gain the skills necessary to safely and ethically pursue hunting, angling and other forms of outdoor recreation on their own.
The program is active in Lander and Cody areas and is now seeking interested families in the Laramie area at this time. Contact Robin Kepple in Laramie at (307) 745-4046 or Sorensen for more information.
Sorensen said the federation’s gift is just the most recent of many hunting, fishing and camping donations the program has received. She encourages any organizations, businesses, foundations or individuals looking to help the program to contact her at (307) 777-4536 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
(Contact: Tasha Sorensen (307) 777-4536)