Inspiring Connections Outdoors

What is the Inspiring Connections Outdoors Program?

Sierra Club Inspiring Connections Outdoors (ICO) is a community outreach program that provides opportunities for urban youth and adults to explore, enjoy, and protect the natural world. Local volunteer leaders work with partner organizations in the Portland area. Our group runs between two and five outings per month (depending on the season). You can learn more about the program here.

We invite you to attend a meeting to meet other volunteers and ask questions in person. If you are interested in volunteering with ICO or would like more information about the program or events, contact Jackie Cherry.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What do you do on a Portland ICO outing?

A: Our outings typically take place on weekends but occasionally we have a partner agency that requests weekdays. We organize day hikes to nearby locations like the Columbia River Gorge, Forest Park or Clackamas river area.

Q: Who are your partner organizations?

A: We partner with a number of great organizations, including Janus Youth Programs, local school districts, and others.

Q: What do our Sierra Club volunteers do?

A: Inspiring Connections Outdoors teaches participants a variety of basic outdoor skills and basic Leave No Trace principles. Volunteers can either be a trip leader or assist the trip leader in sharing any outdoor skills that they may have in an age-appropriate manner.

Q: How do I become a volunteer trip leader?

A: To become a Sierra Club Inspiring Connections Outdoors leader, a volunteer must first:

  • assist on two ICO trips
  • provide proof of first aid & basic CPR certification (some scholarships available)
  • agree to a standard criminal background check, paid for by the Sierra Club
  • agree and sign our Ethics Agreement
  • read and agree to a Child Abuse Recognition and Prevention module or provide prior certification (CARP)
  • complete our online Outdoor Leadership Training training (approx. 1 hr)

To learn more about any of these requirements contact Jackie Cherry.