White Mountain Avalanche Education Fund
Donations are encouraged and easy to do…see the PayPal link at the bottom of the page
The growth and popularity of winter recreation has increased with each season across the avalanche terrain of the White Mountains and especially in the high peaks of the Presidentials. This is particularly true during the periods of highest snow instability, December through March. Avalanche accidents and close calls over the past decade have shown we can do more to educate visitors before they arrive in the mountains. The White Mountain Avalanche Education Fund is used as a mechanism to reach this goal through avalanche awareness and education of the youth and wilderness rescuers of the White Mountain region and those visiting this unique landscape.
The Education Fund’s focus will be through awarding scholarships for avalanche education to young people in the White Mountain area from 6-12th grade. Individual applicants may submit an application in order to attend an avalanche class, or school systems or other organized groups may apply for a scholarship for an age appropriate avalanche clinic. The Fund is also open to rescuers who are asked to enter harm’s way to help those hurt or missing in the mountains. A member of a volunteer SAR organization may submit an application to enroll in either a local avalanche class or another approved program held elsewhere.
Applications will be brought forward by the Mount Washington Avalanche Center to the “SAR Working Group.” This group meets 10 times a year and is made up of the U.S. Forest Service, the NH Fish and Game and all the volunteer mountain SAR organizations. If approved by the SAR Working Group, the applications are forwarded to the Mount Washington Volunteer Ski Patrol for funding. The Mount Washington Volunteer Ski Patrol is a NSP-affiliated Forest Service volunteer organization that both responds to accidents on Mount Washington and educates the public about winter safety. The Mount Washington Volunteer Ski Patrol is a 501c(3) nonprofit organization; donations to the fund are tax deductible.
Types of grants available: The White Mountain Avalanche Education Fund is available to pursue avalanche knowledge and to deliver avalanche education through several avenues.
1. Scholarships for individual participation to fund all or part of an avalanche course, clinic or seminar using curriculums recognized by the professional avalanche community. Programs using curriculum by the Canadian Avalanche Association (CAA), American Avalanche Association (AAA), American Institute for Avalanche Research and Education (AIARE), and the National Ski Patrol (NSP) are eligible.
2. Scholarships for public and private Middle and High School system participation to fund all or part of an avalanche course, clinic, or seminar using curricula recognized by the professional avalanche community. Programs using curriculum by the Canadian Avalanche Association (CAA), American Avalanche Association (AAA), American Institute for Avalanche Research and Education (AIARE), and the National Ski Patrol (NSP) are eligible.
3. Funding to develop avalanche education material to benefit youth and adult residents, or those visiting the mountains of New Hampshire.
Eligibility and how to apply: The Fund will fulfill selected scholarship applications to participate in an avalanche course, seminar, or clinic. Applications will be accepted from individuals between the 6th and 12th grade from the Northeastern United States; from established 6th-12th grade school systems in Coos, Carroll, Grafton Counties in New Hampshire and Oxford County in Maine; and active volunteer mountain rescuers from organizations used as SAR resources by the New Hampshire Fish and Game and the U.S. Forest Service. 6th through 12th grade individuals should include a 1 page typed essay answering “Why I want to take an avalanche course”. School systems seeking grant funding for a class or school program should also submit a 1 page description why an avalanche education program will help their students and their school community. Those interested in funding to develop avalanche education material should prepare and submit a detailed “concept paper” describing the proposed project to enable early review of a project idea. The concept paper should include an outline of the proposed project, timetable for completion, list of any collaborating individuals or organizations, and a proposed budget. Potential applicants are encouraged to share ideas and concepts prior to the concept paper submission for suitability.
Deadline for submissions is September 30th of each season.