On July 12, 2023

The Killington World Cup Foundation awards over $270,000 in grants to 31 nonprofits across 9 states 

 

The Killington World Cup Foundation (KWCF) has awarded 31 grants totaling $270,000 to Northeast area nonprofits in nine states for the upcoming ski season (23/24). Grant amounts ranged  $1,500-$18,000, and all recipients are registered nonprofit organizations or have a fiscal sponsor. 

The KWCF grants were created with the aim of promoting winter sports and enriching communities. In order to increase diversity and equity in sports, KWCF supports initiatives that focus on creating opportunities for underrepresented groups. This includes initiatives that help remove barriers to entry, such as providing equipment and training opportunities. 

Additionally, KWCF aims to create new growth opportunities in winter sports by improving safety mechanisms and infrastructure, as well as funding events that promote the sport to a wider audience. By doing so, KWCF hopes to foster a love for winter sports in individuals of all ages and backgrounds, and to promote a healthy and active lifestyle. 

For instance, Mt. Abram Ski Club (MASC) partnered with Mt. Abram Ski Resort to fund a Youth Community Pass Program (YCPP) available to public school students in Maine. The YCPP provides winter season passes to Mt. Abram for students  aged 6-18. Although many  children live near local ski areas,  few have the opportunity to ski or ride without financial assistance. 

MASC remarked, “The KWCF grant has provided us with the resources needed to provide access to skiing and snowboarding for the youth in western Maine. When children are engaged in outdoor activities they are healthier and happier and become more engaged within their community and their futures.” 

Lebanon Outing Club also identified an opportunity to optimize its learning experience. They have a large number of beginner skiers and snowboarders (ages ranging from around 3 years to adulthood) who are just beginning their learning process and have not yet gained the skills to safely and effectively use the surface lift and trails. To address this issue, the club sought to create a safe learning-only area that would be serviced by the installation of a “magic carpet” surface lift. They received a KWCF grant to expand and improve their magic carpet learning program at Storrs Hill Ski Area. 

Hanover’s Oak Hill is a vital part of the cross-country skiing community in the Upper Valley (New Hampshire). The recent trials and tribulations of the global pandemic have only increased interest in promoting a healthy lifestyle through sport. To cater to this increased interest in cross-country skiing, trail lights were requested for the facility. These lights will improve access to the trails for more kids to use after school in an effort to combat  the early sundowns typical of New England winters. Further, the elementary and middle schools have direct trail access to the system without even setting foot on a sidewalk or a road. With the KWCF grant, organizers will be able to maximize productive ski hours for the next generation. 

KWCF’s contribution towards athletic excellence is also evident through the support of the New England Nordic Ski Association (NENSA). Currently, 2,642 youths are participating in NENSA’s “NENSA Nordic Rocks introductory youth XC ski program” across 28 schools in the Northeast. The Nordic Rocks (NR) program was developed to introduce a new generation of children in grades K-6 to the joy of cross country skiing. NR provides elementary school students with an opportunity to experience cross country skiing during the school day with their teachers and classmates, usually during PE class, to learn about the health and lifestyle benefits associated with exercise and outdoor fun. 

KWCF’s grant supports the funding of NENSA’s youth and introductory program director who organizes and implements the Nordic Rocks (NR) program for NENSA, and supports the Bill Koch Youth Ski League, which is the next-level-up program. 

The Share Winter Foundation aimed to expand its program with the Association of Africans Living in Vermont (AALV) by increasing support to 90 youths by winter 2024. To support the existing and future programming, they planned to purchase hard and soft goods to alleviate capacity issues and facilitate higher rates of improvement. 

Last year, AALV staff and  youth were new to skiing and the winter sports industry; through the guidance of Share Winter, AALV is currently in year two of their learn to ski/snowboard program at Sugarbush, which has been wildly successful. 

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