KALISPELL, Montana – At a March 9 meeting, Flathead Electric Cooperative’s Roundup for Safety Directors awarded $30,539 to 7 area nonprofits, including Flathead Wildlife, Inc., a fish and wildlife sportsman group made up of men, women, and youth from the Flathead area. Flathead Wildlife works with Montana Fish, Wildlife, and Parks (FWP) to provide each successful area graduate of the Hunter Education program with a hunter orange safety vest. The Roundup for Safety Board has helped to fund these vests over the years and awarded $5,300 towards another 1,000 vests.
Jim Vashro presented on behalf of Flathead Wildlife, noting, “Two of Flathead Wildlife’s primary goals are to preserve Montana’s hunting heritage and to involve youth in the outdoors. The partnership on the hunter safety vests between Roundup for Safety, the Montana Hunter Education Program, and Flathead Wildlife achieves both goals in a safe way that encourages interest in the outdoors and promotes time afield with friends and family.”
Vashro shared that Montana law requires that hunters wear at least 400 sq. in. of hunter orange above the waist while in the field and that hunter orange has proven to be a significant factor (up to a 94% reduction) in reducing injury and death from mistaken identity accidents. In awarding funds, the Board noted the nonprofit’s matching funds and partnership with FWP with approval.
Community safety grants were also awarded to:
· Logan Health – bike helmets for distribution at Spring into Safety event — $9,924
· Montana Kayak Academy – PFDs and whitewater helmets — $1,865
· Girls on the Run – safety flags, vests, AED – $2,600
· Ravenwood Outdoor Learning Center – bear safety equipment – $3,500
· North Valley Music School – AED, CPR/AED training, choking device — $2,350
· Lions Bitterroot Youth Camp – playground safety, excavation, pea gravel — $5,000
The Roundup for Safety Board will consider April applications through March 31 and vote on them at its April 13 meeting. If your nonprofit is interested in applying for community safety funds, visit www.flatheadelectric.com/roundup or call Courtney Stone at 406-751-1820.