2014 Warrior Hike Comes to Millinocket

                On Saturday, September 13, 2014 Sean Gobin, Marine combat veteran and founder of Warrior Hike, spoke at the Trails End Festival in Millinocket, Maine. Warrior Hike provides returning combat veterans a therapeutic experience to transition to civilian life and come to terms with their wartime experiences through thru-hiking a national scenic trail and connecting with the outdoors. Warrior Hike began in 2012 with Gobin’s thru-hike of the Appalachian Trail and has experienced significant growth.

This year marked the first year in the program’s history that Warrior hikers were on the Appalachian Trail, Continental Divide Trail, and the Pacific Crest Trail. The growth of the program from the AT to other national scenic trails is an exciting development. Four Warrior Hikers who thru-hiked the AT were in attendance, having summited Katahdin the previous day, and represented each branch of the US military, with the exception of the Coast Guard.

Gobin also announced an expansion of Warrior Hike. Veterans, specifically those injured while serving and are unable to hike, expressed an interest in a similar opportunity to connect with the outdoors to help them heal mentally from their wartime experiences. The result will be Warrior Paddle, which will entail paddling the entire length of the Mississippi River.

                For more information on Warrior Hike or to learn how to support them, visit warriorhike.org

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See pictures on their Facebook Site: https://www.facebook.com/warriorhike

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ATC Hiring a VISTA in Maine!

 

Position Title Appalachian Trail Community VISTA
Location Millinocket, Maine
Supervisors ATC Community Program Manager – Project SupervisorSite Supervisor – Maine Community Committee

All interested Candidates must send cover letter and resume including references to jjudkins@appalachiantrail.org ASAP.

Appalachian Trail Conservancy (ATC) CONSERVATION DEPARTMENTAL MISSION

Permanent protection and sensitive stewardship of the Appalachian Trail footpath and associated resources through effective implementation of a cooperative management system involving ATC, Trail maintaining clubs, and public-agency partners.

More information on the Appalachian Trail Conservancy: www.appalachiantrail.org

Project Goal

The Appalachian Trail Community VISTA in Millinocket will develop programs to bring Appalachian Trail Communities together by fostering a regional identity around outdoor recreation based tourism, and promoting sustainable economic development. With a more deliberate and wider reach promoting the outdoor recreation opportunities, supporting local volunteer organizations through building capacity and volunteer opportunities around those recreation assets, the community can build on the economic advantage of the growing trend and get more youth to experience the community.

Focused VISTA Goals

  • Create opportunities for underserved populations, particularly at-risk youth to participate in experiential outdoor learning on public lands.  These educational opportunities will raise awareness of the economic opportunity presented by continued study, employment, and careers in conservation related fields.
  • Resource Development Grant Writing and Fundraising Strategies
  • Research, Strategic Planning, Community Engagement and Partnership Development

Job requirements

Bachelors degree, good communication skills, familiarity with computers, ability to work in a challenging and changing environment, flexibility and adaptability, self-motivation and a willingness to live in a rural Appalachian community.

GIS, environmental monitoring, community organizing, economic development and experience with the A.T. are desired.

Duration: VISTA is a year of service
Start Date:  Pre-Service Orientation training starts August 11; onsite in mid-August
Hours: Full Time (no external employment is permitted)

This position is not a staff position and does not include a salary; rather, it provides a living allowance of approximately $900 a month.  It includes health insurance, child care assistance, and an education award valued at or $5,645 or a cash stipend of $1,500 at the end of service.  Candidates relocating more than 50 miles for service are eligible for $550 relocation/settling in allowance.

DOI/VISTA – Department of the Interior Volunteer in Service to America. The VISTA program was started by President Johnson as the domestic equivalent of the Peace Corps.  VISTA seeks to alleviate poverty and build the capacity of those trying to do so.

Training – There are two trainings per year to advance the professional development of its VISTA members and their supervisors.  These trainings help VISTA’s to utilize the Conservation Legacy network by meeting fellow VISTAs in person.  The spring training is for VISTAs only and the fall training brings Supervisors and VISTA Members together. DOI/VISTA sites will be expected to participate in training and all expenses are covered.

VISTA volunteers are placed in communities to build capacity, empower citizens and community volunteers, and create a network of support that otherwise would not exist among isolated, rural communities. We use national service as a local solution and bring measurable results to the communities we serve. VISTAs have been developing ad hoc committees and local collaborative groups with participation from concerned citizens, local businesses and political decision-makers, and agencies regionally and statewide to identify economic and environmental problems and their sources. Through these grassroots engagements, communities implement successful projects and develop citizen-driven solutions by working with leaders in the community who will support these projects in the long-term future. Striving for sustainability, the Teams build capacity by recruiting and training community volunteers who are invested locally and able to continue addressing recovery and revitalization in their own communities. To guide the Volunteers in their service, the Teams have developed 5 core goals:

  •  Build Local Capacity
  • Engage Economic Redevelopment
  • Promote Environmental Stewardship
  • Enhance Outreach and Education
  • Promote Professional Development

 

Maine Collaboration!

I’m so excited about the A.T. Community workshop in Maine on Friday! Residents from Millinocket (newly approved to be designated!), Rangeley and Monson will all be there to talk about ways to network and work together to highlight the A.T. in their communities.

April 19 Agenda

While I am a bit disappointed that I won’t have an opportunity to do any hiking this time, it will be fun to have a meeting with 3 A.T. Communities all together. Here are a couple of pictures from my last trip to Maine (last summer)…ahhh, the memories:)

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Oh Clare, making everything fun wherever she goes!