Modeled after FFA, Kansas WILD Outdoors engages students in the outdoors with adventure, experiences, learning, leadership and service!
Start a Kansas WILD Outdoors Chapter at your school!
The following steps will help you navigate the process of establishing a quality Kansas WILD Outdoors program. We encourage you to reach out to available resources to help you along the journey, including the Kansas WILD Outdoors staff and the Kansas Association for Conservation and Environmental Education (KACEE) staff. We’re here to help!
Take the Temperature
To start a Kansas WILD Outdoors chapter, begin by reaching out to students and faculty who may be interested in starting a program with you. Gauge the interest of faculty, students and parents to help and support your chapter in moving forward. Surveys are a great way to gather feedback and support for your new chapter. Utilize these resources:
Convene Your Co-Conspirators
As a cohort, create a proposal for starting a chapter (make sure you know what’s required to start a club at your school) and approach your administration for support. Next, convene a small group of students who are interested in becoming active members and participating in learning, events, outreach, and trips, and together, create a sponsorship proposal. Request sponsorship from a school staff member or community member who you and your team have identified as someone who may be interested in supporting your Kansas WILD Outdoors Chapter.
Rustle Up Your Resources
What are things in your area that you would like to do outdoors? Are there programs or community events that are geared toward students that you can participate in? Is there green space on your school campus that you can engage with? Where can you find out what is available around you? Start with these resources:
Pinpoint a Plan
Once you’ve secured sponsorship, confirmed student and parent interest, and learned about some of the available activities and resources in your area, staying on track is more important than ever. Plan, Plan, Plan! Create a schedule for when you are going to have club meetings and outings, and plan for specific group sizes and locations.This might involve meeting with parents, a school transportation director, or creating a plan to fundraise if funding is needed.
Conjure Creativity & Fire Up the Fun!
Vary the content and style of your monthly meetings: mixing up viewings of our favorite outdoor themed movies; go hiking, fishing, or camping; conduct awareness presentations or student presentations on volunteer work, and discussions on outdoor ethics. Share stories, recommend hiking trails or fishing spots, and share your best original outdoor recipes.
It is also very important that club members, and anyone who wants it, receive information and resources to plan their own adventures. Teach them about the Ten Essentials (for hiking), trail/camping etiquette, Leave No Trace, and how to use KS State Parks Booklet, River Camping Guide and Kansas Trails.
"I couldn’t wait to be a WILD ambassador so I could be a part of the WILD days we have at our school. I have made many new friends and met some of the coolest people through WILD, which is one of my favorite things about the program. I’m glad I joined WILD because of everything I have learned from it and all of the opportunities it has given me to do new things."
--Student Testimonial | Bartlett, Kansas