Orienteering USA Junior Team Giving Back to the Community

We hear a lot about the Junior Team, but that's mostly in the context of their competitions and results. What isn't always immediately obvious is the amount of work that these talented young men and women are giving back to their community as they strive to improve. The Junior Team Executive Steering Committee (JTESC) has compiled some of these efforts, and wanted to share this information with the rest of the community.

Training at the highest level for sport requires a lot of support from the surrounding community both financially and pragmatically. To help balance this it’s important for the athletes to give back what they have learned to the community. In the U.S. junior orienteering program, the juniors are expected to be volunteer and participate in the local orienteering scene.

Because we live in such a big country, it’s sometimes hard to see how much the juniors are giving back to the sport. Contributions come in many ways, from inspiring a younger generation, to helping at trainings and events, to using success to further the sport through publicity and blogging.

We thought that it would be nice to share some the specific areas that juniors on the national team have impacted their local or the national community. I would also encourage clubs to reach out to their athletes on the national team and get their support in teaching the next generation, course design, and mapping, as this will also help their training and further the sport.

Junior OUSA Community Service 2017

Turner Leigh (JNT/QOC)
- leads his NJROTC Orienteering team in organizing and hosting one of Quantico Orienteering Club's meets

Thomas Laraia (JNT/JWOC team/MNOC)
-Set/Retrieval for three days for I Know My Way (IKMW; Andrea’s youth/school orienteering company) at elementary school orienteering.
-Coach for Washington Tech JROTC Beginners at Lake Elmo JROTC Camp + Setting/Vetting + Assistant Course Designer
- course review with the experienced JROTC cadets at every meet with JROTC schools that he attends
- taught experienced JROTC cadets how to do course review with the less experienced ones.
-Mapping elementary and middle schools for I Know My Way
-Setting/Vetting at Prior Lake Night-O
-Setting Vetting at Afton State Park Meet
-Aid at Introduction to Orienteering for Trail Kids Programs
-Control Retrieval at local meets I attend
All of these were within the last year.

Siri Christopherson (JNT/JWOC team/COC)
- frequently do control pickup
- trying to make an effort to get some of the Cascade kids to join the Junior program
- was interviewed for local media outlets about participation in JWOC 2017

Tyra Christopherson (JNT/JWOC team/COC)
- working on making a map of Northeastern University
- last spring, I helped do a training for some Navigation Games kids before Interscholastics.
- I occasionally do control pick up at local meets.
- Siri and I recently had an interview with a local reporter

David Runde (JNT/JWOC team/MNOC/Kristiansand)
- arranged a local meet.
- volunteered at the National Night Championship and "KOK 2-Dagers"(national meet)
- volunteered for World Orienteering Day for four different schools
- checked two permanent courses for MNOC
- volunteered for one (soon another) local street races to fundraise
- wrote an article for ONA

Aidan Minto (JNT/JWOC team/ICO)
- made an orienteering map of Broad Ripple, a neighborhood of Indianapolis
- set courses for an ICO meet at Holliday Park
- updated the map for the Flying Pig Day 1 at Eagle Creek
- vetted control locations for same
- put out controls for same
- picked up controls for same
- regularly pick up controls for ICO and OCIN meets
- updated the map, set, and picked up controls for ICO meet at Story

AJ Riley (JNT/JWOC team/QOC)
- course design for a Sprint at a DVOA event (Wilson Park)
- set controls (in a snow storm) for a DVOA event (Norristown Farm Park)
- wrote blog posts for the Jr. team
- volunteered with little kids for 2 seasons of OAKs ( outdoor adventures kids)

Keegan Harkavy (JDT/CSU)
- spent six weeks this summer working for Navigation Games to promote the sport of orienteering within our local community.
- Helped develop and teach after-school classes to K-5 kids in Cambridge.

Isabel Bryant (JNT/JWOC team/CSU)
- Last spring I helped run an orienteering event at Girls' Sports Day. We got every fifth grade girl in Cambridge to try orienteering!
- Assisted with events on World Orienteering Day, specifically at the Morse School working with kids up to fifth grade. For that event we actually had the fifth graders take responsibility and teach younger students how to orienteer.
- Helped coach Ethan's group of Cambridge student athletes a couple times, driving them to the woods, setting up streamers, shadowing them on courses, doing course review...
- Picking up controls at a few local NEOC meets

Julia Doubson (BAOC)
- Picked up controls at local events
- Designed a few courses for one meet
- Started an orienteering club at school and brought the school club and other friends to a couple BAOC meets
- Trying to map my school right now
- Also I'm making the youth league schedule for BAOC and I'm going to be helping Erin coach the younger kids at the trainings he's doing

Brigitte Bordelon (USMAOC)
- Taught orienteering to Boy Scouts at USMAOC’s annual orienteering skills weekend
- Designed and set courses for the West Point A Meet
- Served as a mentor at a training camp

Katie Petersen
- Helped set courses at two local meets
- Pre-ran some courses for other local meets
- DIscussed National Team with other local juniors, did course reviews, and has brought friends to meets

All JNT and JWOC Team Members are
- writing blog posts and articles for ONA

posted 28 September 2017