Roaring Fork Outdoor Volunteers receives largest grant in history from Great Outdoors Colorado

Staff reports
Volunteers organized by Roaring Fork Outdoor Volunteers reseed terrain the Lake Christine Fire burn scar in 2019.
RFOV/courtesy photo

An increase in recreation and wildfires prompted a state entity to provide a substantial allocation to Roaring Fork Outdoor Volunteers, officials announced Friday.

Great Outdoors Colorado, a statewide nonprofit that invests portions of Colorado Lottery proceeds toward environmental and recreational preservation and enhancements, allocated $298,000 to Roaring Fork Outdoor Volunteers, which conducts a variety of environmental stewardship activities and programs from Aspen to Parachute.

The grant is part of Great Outdoors Colorado’s stewardship impact program, which supports collaborative stewardship work that demonstrates meaningful improvements to ecological and recreational opportunities, according to a news release sent Friday.

“As the largest single grant in RFOV’s 26-year history, funding will support increased capacity by hiring four new staff members; training for staff, volunteers, and partners; an upgrade to RFOV’s volunteer registration system; and the purchase of a vehicle to support increased project participation,” the release states.

In the release RFOV Executive Director Becca Schild said the grant would allow the organization to continue to grow its mission of service.

“We are thrilled to receive this support and endorsement from GOCO,” Schild said. “RFOV is well positioned to build off our strong foundation and effectively scale our stewardship efforts to address the changing needs of our region.”

Through a combination of community volunteer projects, group volunteer projects, and youth service-learning days, Roaring Fork Outdoor Volunteers plan to complete 145 stewardship projects for a total of 6,000 volunteer hours each year across its service region — from Independence Pass to Parachute and Marble to Glenwood Canyon — with a particular emphasis on growing volunteer participation by 30% in the Middle Colorado River Valley, the release states.