Gratitude

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November 23, 2021

This year I think we are all a little more grateful for everything. We are grateful for the ability to travel, for in-person events, for time with friends, family and our running communities. 

And, as we wrap up our races for the year, we at Wander Project are extremely grateful for ALL of the athletes that have supported us and our mission in 2021!

This week we were able to send out another $92,229.23 to our partner organizations because of charity bib athletes. Athletes raise these funds by choosing the charity bib option at registration, and instead of paying their registration fee, they engage their friends and families in fundraising efforts to support the communities that host each event. 

The majority of these donations come in the form of donations of $20 or less…that’s a lot of people doing little to make a big difference!

Below are the projects that we were able to support for the second half of the year’s events (think Mount Rainier through Joshua Tree):

  • Rainier Foothills Wellness Foundation- Care Van, In-School Mental Health Counseling: $965 
  • Rocky Mountain Conservancy- Rebuild the Fern Lake Trail (and others) damaged/destroyed by wildfires: $3,605.33
  • Friends of the Smokies- Cades Cove Historic Field Restoration: $3,265.05
  • Mount Rushmore Society- Youth education projects including bus vouchers for school groups, Junior Ranger Program: $3,000 to buses; $11,540.71 Junior Ranger
  • The Nature Conservancy- Sheep Bridge Nature Preserve: $16,718.05
  • Grand Staircase Escalante Partners- Stewardship and Visitation Programs: $16,718.05
  • Navajo Yes- Development of the Chuska Mountain Bike Route including establishing campsites and rest areas, providing wayfinding and interpretive signage along with ramadas and composting toilets along routes: $16,718.05 (Trailfest) + $2,492.06 (Lake Powell)
  • Friends of Joshua Tree (SAR)- Replacing old and/or outdated equipment for SAR: $4,942.94
  • Public Lands Alliance- General operating that supports the overall preservation and conservation of public lands: $7,263.99
  • Joshua Tree National Park Association- Desert Institute Field Days (in collaboration with Latino Outdoors and other partners) for 50 participants: $5,000**

**This donation came directly from Vacation Races as part of their commitment to support programs that focus on increasing diversity, equity and inclusion, especially as it relates to getting underserved populations into the parks. 

So, as we embrace the end of the year and all of the holiday gatherings we want you to know that this year we are grateful for you.

Check out how you can help support the communities that inspire you to run by going to our Athletes page on our website: https://www.wanderproject.org/athletes/ 

About the author 

Amy Ben-Horin

Amy has worked in the nonprofit sector for the past 14 years. While her work has primarily been focused within the youth and education realm, she, like most people in the nonprofit sector, has worn almost every hat imaginable, including co-founder for an organization in 2014. Amy has also had the honor of presenting at TEDx Vail in 2016, sharing what she believes is the key to helping youth reach their full potential. Stepping into the role of Executive Director for another start-up organization, Amy is passionate about service to others and is extremely excited to help support the amazing mission of Wander Project.

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