promote personal development by linking cultures, fostering respect of self
and others and providing leadership skills ;
promote appreciation and protection of our local and global environments
through a process of outdoor exploration, education, spiritual growth and
So, What Does That Mean?
City Outings (ICO) is a Sierra Club community outreach program.
Through ICO, Sierra Club members provide outdoor experiences for
nonmembers who might not otherwise have them.
Most of the participants are young people from urban communities, but ICO
leaders also conduct trips for physically disabled persons and hearing or
visually impaired individuals, or any population that does not have access to
wilderness activities, nor environmental appreciation.
The goal of the Inner City Outings
program is to help people discover the beauty and challenges of the wild lands
we treasure, acquire the skills necessary to enjoy them safely, and learn that
human activity and the natural world are interrelated.
This means trust and communication are necessary, as are physical safety
and respect for limits, and recognizing the fragility of nature (environmental
education). The program’s success
helps to increase the environmental awareness, interpersonal skills, and
self-esteem of the participants through active involvement with nature.
To recruit participants for the
outings, ICO leaders build partnerships with community agencies or schools that
want to provide outings for their members, but who do not have the resources
needed to do so. Staff from the
agencies are encouraged to work closely with the ICO leaders to make the outings
successful experiences. Local
partner agencies have included Brooklawn, Maryhurst, Jefferson County Public Schools,
and Portland Neighborhood House.
ICO furnishes most of what is needed
for wilderness adventure: skilled leadership, equipment and sometimes even food
and transportation. Most outings
are day hikes or weekend trips with 6 to12 participants, 4 ICO volunteer leaders
one or more agency staff. The group
usually visits a nearby park or wilderness area.
Local outings have included: day hikes to Tioga Falls and the Falls of
the Ohio, caving outings, and overnight trips to the Red River Gorge, Mammoth
Cave National Park, Big South Fork Recreation Area, and
Hoosier National Forest.
ICO leaders are volunteers. Although ICO is a National Sierra Club program headquartered in San Francisco, each local ICO group functions as an activity section or subcommittee of its local Sierra Club Chapter or Group. We are linked to the Louisville Group of Kentucky’s Cumberland Chapter.
For more information, please feel free to email our current leadership, Josh McMinn and Paula Mitchell.
Contact Us (Last updated 02/13/08 )