ICO - Information for Leaders


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Information for Leaders

The Inspiring Connections Outdoors program exists because of the merit of our leaders. Two Sierra Club leaders must accompany each Inspiring Connections Outdoors trip. At least one of these leaders must be specially certified as an Inspiring Connections Outdoors leader.

Because requests for outings exceed our capacity, ICO has a continuing need for new leaders. A leader can sign up just to be available to lead or co-lead scheduled hikes, but usually leaders also act as a liaison with a school or agency, staying in touch with the school or agency about when they would like hikes and helping to prepare them for hikes.

Your energy and imagination can help create exciting opportunities for the people ICO serves!

Become a Leader

There are a few simple steps to becoming a leader:

  1. Join the Sierra Club.

  2. Participate on at least three Sierra Club sponsored outings. These may be ICO outings or any other Sierra Club outing. Ask questions. Be observant.

  3. Obtain current First Aid and CPR certification. The Red Cross offers First Aid and CPR classes. The Knoxville ICO also schedules inexpensive classes annually for potential and current leaders through the American Heart Association.

  4. Lead a provisional hike. You simply plan a hike with an experienced certified ICO leader along to evaluate you.

  5. Because ICO leaders work with children, a few extra steps are required to ensure the safety of our trip participants. You will be required to take Sierra Club’s Child Abuse Recognition and Prevention (C.A.R.P.) training. You will also be required to undergo a background screening provided by the Sierra Club. For details, please contact Alice Thornton at scithorn@aol.com, 865-719-9741. In addition to Sierra Club requirements, several partner agencies have additional requirements for volunteers having contact with their youth. Alice will help you with these additional requirements that can usually be handled with on-line training and forms.

  6. Come to quarterly ICO meetings whenever possible. Become one of us. There are lots of people at the meetings who want you to succeed.

Forms for Leaders

Provide these PDF forms, modified to include outing specific logistic, to agency contacts to pass out to participants so that they are turned in before going on the outing:

Fill out this form after each trip and send to Mac Post, mpost3116@gmail.com

Knoxville Inspiring Connections Outdoors is a community outreach program that provides opportunities for urban youth and adults to explore, enjoy and protect the natural world.

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