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State agencies join forces to raise awareness for veterans, persons with disabilities, on benefits of outdoor recreation

Oregon Fish and Wildlife
Oregon Marine Board
Oregon Department of Veterans Affairs
Oregon Parks and Recreation Department

July 28, 2021

SALEM, Ore.—Ask anyone about communing in the outdoors, whether hiking, biking, fishing, boating, camping or just “being,” and many will share a long list of benefits to their mental, physical, and spiritual wellbeing. But what many people may not be aware of are the wide range of recreational benefits offered through state agency programs and organizations that serve veterans, active military, and persons with physical limitations.

The Oregon State Marine Board (OSMB), in partnership with the Oregon Department of Veterans’ Affairs Oregon (ODVA), Oregon Parks and Recreation Department (OPRD), and the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife (ODFW), are joining forces to raise awareness for veterans and persons with disabilities around different outdoor adventures in the state to uncover some of the lesser-known water recreation opportunities in the outdoors that aid in the healing process. These agencies are committed to working together to help remove barriers and improve information sharing to better connect people to the water so healing can happen.

Through the end of the year, the agencies will highlight various opportunities to get out on the water to boat, fish, and enjoy other forms of outdoor recreation. Additional outreach will include blogs/vlogs highlighting personal stories, agency license/pass discounts, grant opportunities, interactive maps of ADA facilities, and trip planning tips. Information is shared on ODVA’s Recreation page. People are invited to also subscribe to ODVA’s email distribution list for benefit and program information.

“We are excited about this partnership to build awareness of the many recreation benefits and opportunities available to Oregon veterans to enjoy our beautiful state,” said ODVA Director Kelly Fitzpatrick. “The mental and physical healing that is experienced by being in the outdoors, is so important to the overall recovery and well-being of so many of our state’s veterans who have served our nation.”

Visit ODVA’s recreation page to learn more about programs and benefits.

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Ashley Massey, OSMB (971) 707-2396
Kathie Dalton, ODVA,(503) 373-2390
Michelle Dennehy, ODFW (503) 931-2748
Chris Havel, OPRD,(503) 986-0722

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