SLV Generation Wild, City of Alamosa get a $350K boost from GOCO

Courtesy photo The San Luis Valley Generation Wild Conejos Crew.

COLORADO — The Great Outdoors Colorado (GOCO) board awarded $350,000 to the City of Alamosa and San Luis Valley Generation Wild (SLVGW) for the group’s work to get kids and families outside. The community’s mission is for the San Luis Valley to have a vibrant, healthy, and active outdoor community cared for by all.

The funding is part of GOCO’s Generation Wild program, which launched in 2015 to help urban, suburban, and rural communities across Colorado introduce kids and families to new outdoor experiences and inspire them to get outside more often for their health and happiness.

SLVGW partners work together to create outdoor opportunities and connections for all people in the San Luis Valley. With this funding, partners will deepen their relationships with families and parents, increase visibility and reach for partners, and develop an outdoor workforce pipeline for youth.

The Alamosa School District is moving into a four-day school week, and SLVGW partners will use this funding to offer new Friday programming and support staff capacity for new and existing work. The community also plans to expand marketing efforts, ensuring communities across the Valley know about the available programs. Partners will continue providing high-quality outdoor educational programs for youth in the SLV, and ensure skill-building and professional advancement opportunities for youth to explore outdoor career paths. In addition, the community will welcome two new partners: the Alamosa Bicycle Coalition and Southwest Conservation Corps Los Valles.

“ABC's bike programming for kids has really taken off this year. More kids than ever are participating in our bike rides, rodeos, and lessons. It is so fun to see kids having a blast while unknowingly gaining important skills and safety knowledge,” said Alamosa Bicycle Coalition Executive Director Grantley Showalter. “The amount of joy a bike can bring to a kid always blows me away. Alamosa Bicycle Coalition is looking forward to getting more kids outside next year and joining the SLV GenWild Coalition!”

Since 2016, SLVGW partners, led by the City of Alamosa, have worked to connect Valley youth to the outdoors. The community, which was formerly two coalitions, merged in 2020 to form partnerships with community organizations and streamline program opportunities to offer a range of outdoor initiatives to meet the needs of youth from kindergarten through twelfth grade. Partners also created new pathways to employment opportunities for young adults through internships, scholarships, and youth counselor positions, encouraging the next generation to consider careers in the outdoors and environmental education.

This new funding brings the total GOCO investment in SLVGW since 2015 to more than $4.25 million. Signature projects include the Rio Grande Farm Park’s education center, Boys and Girls Club Outdoor Adventure program, the Alamosa Rio Trio adventure race, Inspire trail, and the Adams State Adventure Program’s trip program.

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