The N.C. Wildlife Federation has learned that it’s been chosen to receive a $25,000 grant from The North Face Co. to help educate children about nature and the outdoors world.


The Federation will use North Face’s “Explore Grant” in its Great Outdoors University program, which is designed to “reduce the nature deficit and restore the bonds to nature for the mental, physical and spiritual well being of our children and the health of the earth,” according to a news release.

“It is a real honor to be a recipient of this generous grant.” said Mary Bures, the Federation’s Great Outdoors University program manager. “Great Outdoors University makes possible a much-needed chance for our youth to experience the wonders of the natural world in ways that can have a profound effect for years to come. It …. (includes) many valuable lessons: a hands-on way of studying the physical and life sciences, the joy of nature exploration and discovery, the mastery of outdoor skills, self-confidence, physical fitness and mentoring with admirable role models.”

Great Outdoors University has connected more than 1,800 children to outdoor experiences.

North Face chose 10 organizations from hundreds of applicants and asked its followers to vote on Facebook for their choice – and the Federation came out on top, earning one of the largest grants the company has awarded.

The Federation established Great Outdoors University in 2012 with help from Big Brothers, Big Sisters, Boys and Girls Clubs and Hispanic learning centers. To learn more about GoU visit

The North Face offers equipment and clothing for hikers, climbers and runners, concentrating on backpacks, backcountry outfitting, tents, luggage, sleeping bags and running/hiking shoes.