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Outdoors for All helps military wounded and families

Outdoors for All helps veterans and their families through a variety of outdoor experiences. Photo credit: Outdoors for All

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Being outdoors is exhilarating and invigorating.

"The outdoors is about freedom," Ed Bronsdon, the executive director of Outdoors for All, wrote in a news article.

The organization strives to offer quality outdoor recreational opportunities to injured active-duty servicemembers, their families, and veterans.

"We believe in the transformative experience that outdoor recreation provides in the recovery process," Kate Speck, coordinator of events and marketing, related in an email.

"Anyone interested in attending one of our programs, or would like to get involved as a volunteer, is welcome to visit our website at"

Started in 1979 at Snoqualmie Pass to teach 15 children with disabilities to ski, this Seattle-based foundation is dedicated to bringing adults and children with disabilities into the great outdoors.

"Any time I think I'm having a challenging day," continued Bronsdon, "I think of the challenges the folks we work with are dealing with, and that makes me push on."

The organization is a national leader and one of the largest nonprofit organizations providing instruction in outdoor recreation for individuals with physical, developmental and sensory disabilities.

Outdoors for All's programming includes skiing, snowboarding, snowshoeing, cycling, mountain biking, hiking, kayaking, day camps, water skiing, rock-climbing, camping and custom events.

"We are a customer-driven organization where each year more than 2,900 children and adults with disabilities exercise their abilities thanks to the training and support of more than 850 volunteers," added Speck.

Over the past year, Outdoors for All has served over 250 veterans, or about eight percent, of its total participants.

"As a wounded soldier, my thoughts engulfed me into believing I would not be able to enjoy outdoor adventures," said Martin Trejo.

"Thanks to this program, my beliefs and thoughts have done a complete 180; I am able to enjoy being outdoors and learning new skills that I can take home and include my friends and family."

Donations to the Combined Federal Campaign (CFC) help fund what Outdoors for All accomplishes.

"One hundred percent of funds from the CFC and other workplace giving programs go directly to support Outdoors for All's mission," concluded Speck.

The organization's CFC donation number is 92123.

"This program has enabled me to regain my self-esteem and confidence," said Army veteran Leah Hurley.

"And for that I say ‘Thank you so much!'"

For more information on Outdoors for All, visit, call 206.838.6030 or email

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