401 Meeker St Delta CO 81416 970.874.4421

GOCO grant opens up internship opportunities

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The Nature Connection GOCO Inspire program is seeking a winter intern (age 17+) to help get kids onto cross-country skis and out onto the snow to explore our national forests in winter.

This position -- and about 45 other internships and trainings -- was made possible through the $1.7 million GOCO Inspire grant awarded to The Nature Connection to implement its vision of "places, programs and pathways" over the next three years.

The Nature Connection's goal is to inspire our communities to connect to nature, promoting healthy lifestyles through fun and energized outdoor experiences.

The internships serve a dual purpose, in that they will expose selected applicants to outdoor career opportunities -- the pathways -- while also facilitating the programs that offer hands-on outdoor experiences for youth of Olathe and Delta County.

The Nature Connection already has an extensive library of ski equipment; it will be up to the winter intern to help get that gear ready for student outings to Grand Mesa and other winter sites. Cross-country skis, poles and boots must be loaded into an equipment trailer. On site, the intern and TNC staff will help participants with sizing and get them started with encouragement and basic instruction.

This position is ideal for an outdoor enthusiast who has a positive attitude and is willing to work with youth of all ages, said Anita Evans, acting director of The Nature Connection.

The intern will work with executive director Vince Galgano and program director Priscilla Williams, who were recently selected to lead The Nature Connection in implementing the GOCO Inspire grant.

This part-time position will vary from two to four days per week, and pays up to $500 monthly for up to three months.

A link to the online application process can be found on the TNC website at thenatureconnection.net.

"We also will be helping our partner organizations communicate youth job opportunities through TNC website," Evans said. The U.S. Forest Service, BLM, Youth Conservation Corps and other partner agencies are expected to have additional opportunities for youth employment.

A partial list of the internships available through The Nature Connection includes:

• Summer backpacking guides

• Hunting and fishing guides

• Small ag

• Lifeguard

• Water safety instructor

• Gear library maintenance and program aide at Fort Uncompahgre in Delta

• Gear library maintenance and program aide at The Nature Connection headquarters in Hotchkiss.

Information on these opportunities, as well as details on other youth jobs, will be posted on the TNC website as they become available. Students are also encouraged to talk to the Youth Outdoor Network liaison at their school for more information about summer job possibilities.

Great Outdoors Colorado (GOCO) invests a portion of Colorado Lottery proceeds to help preserve and enhance the state's parks, trails, wildlife, rivers, and open spaces. GOCO has funded more than 4,700 projects in urban and rural areas in all 64 counties without any tax dollar support. Visit GOCO.org for more information.

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