Fifty enthusiastic seventh and eighth grade students from South Fork Middle School will participate in an innovative, educationally focused community service program from May 3rd to May 7th. The program is sponsored by Kern River Outfitters, Sequoia National Forest, California Land Management and Mountain & River Adventures and focuses on developing teamwork and leadership skills and introduces teens to the value and rewards of serving their community.

2010 marks the 18th year of this nationally recognized program. The curriculum includes student service projects including erosion control, stream restoration and trail building, hands-on science and social studies curriculum, and adventure challenge/leadership activities such as river rafting and climbing. Over 1,300 students have participated in the program since its inception. The program was honored with a ‘Spirit of the Land’ award from the U.S. Olympic Organizing Committee and a Service Award from America Outdoors Association. Sequoia National Forest estimates that the value of the work that the students have completed is in excess of $80,000.

“The students really get a lot out of the program,” comments Jim Ritter, President of Kern River Outfitters and co-director of the program. “We provide hands on experiences and some adventurous challenges for these students. Throughout the week you can see the kids’ work hard and their knowledge increase.”

Kern River Outfitters has been rafting on the Kern River since 1980. With a staff of over 50 professional river guides and support personnel, the company and its affiliate, Idaho & Oregon River Journeys, run one- to six-day river trips in California, Oregon and Idaho. For more information, visit http://www.KernRafting.com or call 1-800-323-4234.

Written by kro2013