Finding a Way to Give Back

Last September I was invited to become a part of the Touch The Sky board of directors, by Aaron Hjelt. Most of the reason I was invited was because I’m a warm body to show up to the meetings, but my experience with the Bozeman Climbing Team (BCT) as an athlete and coach gave me a connection to the organisation that runs the BCT. This connection made me want to give back to this organisation for all the help and support it showed me.

Touch The Sky is a non-profit 501 (c)3 that’s mission is to “provide rock climbing opportunities to youth as a means to foster environmental awareness, mind-body connection, and interpersonal relationships. Our programs are fun, challenging, rewarding, and leave memories that will last a lifetime.” As part of that mission Touch The Sky (TTS) runs the BCT, for youth competitors, two (as of now) week-long summer camps, an advanced climbing trip to a foreign location (Squamish, BC last year), as well as guided day trips for various groups including Big Sky Youth Empowerment Project and Spire Climbing Center among others.

On Tuesday, the Board of Directors got together for one of our biannual meetings for Touch the Sky. We went over the all the financials for 2010 and went over all the great summer programs we have in store. I’m really thankful I’m a part of this great organisation. We have a lot of great things in the works for the next few years that should help us improve our ability to provide more kids the opportunity to go rock climbing in more places.

One of those great programs I wish I could have done is this years trip to Northern Spain. Tomorrow TTS’s Executive Director Aaron Hjelt and assistant guide Brandon Smith are taking 10 kids from around the region to Spain for 20 days after the SCS Divisional Championships. I know they are going to have a great trip and can’t wait to here about it when they come back. Instead of heading to Spain I’ll be heading down to Ten Sleep for the weekend, dreaming of all the amazing limestone and great weather Aaron and crew are going to be enjoying. While I may not be able to help out with the trip to Spain, I will be helping guide for some of the group trips with the BYEP and Spire which are always a great time.

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