Financial Assistance

At Wild Whatcom, we believe all children should have the opportunity for outdoor exploration and learning. Though our funds are limited, we encourage families with need to submit a request for assistance. Families who qualify for the Free and Reduced Price School Meals program (or equivalent) will be offered up to 75% of program fees. Financial assistance for remaining applicants will be determined based on need (household income, number of dependents, family circumstances, etc.) and availability of funds. 

To apply for financial assistance proceed with our standard registration here.  The financial assistance form will appear once you have selected the program(s) you are registering for.


Cancellations and Refunds

We understand that life changes, even with the best intentions and plans. We also know that many decisions here at Wild Whatcom are put into action based on enrollment expectations. In light of this, 10% of the cost is non-refundable, regardless of when you cancel.  After that, refund amounts are based on how far in advance we receive the request prior to program start. We make exceptions for requests due to family or medical emergencies and strive to honor these with compassion and understanding.

Neighborhood Nature

  • 1 month or more notice = 90% refund
  • 2 weeks or more notice = 50% refund
  • Less than 2 weeks notice = No refund

Summer Adventures - Camps

  • 2 months or more notice = 90% refund
  • 1 month or more notice = 75% refund
  • 2 weeks or more notice = 50% refund
  • Less than 2 weeks notice = No refund

Summer Adventures - Wilderness Explorations

  • 3 months or more notice = 90% refund
  • 2 months or more notice = 75% refund
  • 1 month or more notice = 50% refund
  • Less than 1 month notice = No refund

Explorers Club

While we hope Explorers Club (EC) will be a year-long commitment, we understand that schedules change for families.

Any cancellations prior to August 10 will receive a refund of any payments made less a $50 cancellation fee.

After August 10 (unless waiting for a Financial Assistance decision), you are making a financial commitment for participation through December.

After January 10, you are making a financial commitment for participation through the end of the Explorers Club season (typically May or June).

Outside of these deadlines, we are only able to provide refunds for departures due to medical/family emergencies or moving. Please know that by leaving Explorers Club, we won't be able to hold your child’s spot and there's a chance it will be filled by a new participant. If you only need to miss an outing or two, take a moment to review our Missed Days and Make-Ups policy for those guidelines.

We appreciate your understanding.


Risk and Responsibility

The majority of Wild Whatcom’s programs are conducted in the field where participants may encounter uneven terrain, inclement weather, insects, and other unpredictable events. Participants should be prepared for such events and in good physical condition to spend an entire day outdoors. Participants and/or their parents or guardians must complete and sign the Wild Whatcom Acknowledgement of Risk and Liability Release before participating in programs. In addition, all participants are responsible for providing their own health and accident insurance. 

For Community Programs, complete an Acknowledgement of Risk and Liability Release ahead of time. Bring with you and get right to exploring!


Immunizations

For extended backpacking trips lasting longer than 36 consecutive hours (summer season only), a tetanus booster within the last 5 years and a current copy of your child's Immunization Record showing a full primary tetanus vaccine series is required to participate.

No exceptions to tetanus policy will be allowed for extended backpacking trips as it would require evacuation of any participant who sustains any skin wound since tetanus spores are present in soil and can occur even with a minor wound in individuals not immunized to tetanus.

For participants planning to register for one of our summer extended backpacking trips, please note a seven (7) month window is needed in order to get the full series of tetanus. Summer trips typically begin late June/early July. Immunization records may be uploaded to your child’s account or submitted via fax, email, or postal mail prior to your child exploring with us.

Immunization policy FAQ


Medications

Any child bringing, or planning to take, a medication during a Wild Whatcom outing, including ANY prescription or non-prescription medication, will need to complete a medications form for each medicine and turn in to the lead group mentor prior to each outing. This policy applies to Explorers Club and Neighborhood Nature outings, summer camps, backpack trips and any other Wild Whatcom outing where children are participating without a parent or guardian present.  


Explorers Club - Missed Days and Make Ups

From experience, we know that Explorers Club groups who prioritize attendance offer a much richer experience for each participant. We hope that, amidst the busy schedules of today, you will help your child prioritize getting outside with Explorers Club!

We also understand that life is unpredictable and family emergencies, illness, and other critical events occur. If your child cannot attend an outing with their group, you can try to schedule a make-up day with another group by contacting the BEC or GEC Coordinator. With nearly all of our groups running at capacity, make-ups are often difficult to arrange. We cannot guarantee an alternative spot and we will prioritize those needed due to sickness and emergencies. Typically we aren't able to grant make-up days for conflicts with other extracurricular or social activities.

If your child will be missing an outing, please take the time to let your group coordinator know via email or phone as soon as possible. Unanticipated absences affect our commitments to service providers and to one another and it is super helpful to know in advance. Thank you!


Communications

Your privacy and right to control what mail you receive is very important to us. Wild Whatcom maintains an opt-in approach for communications. That means we only want to send communications to individuals who have requested them or to people with whom we have an on-going individual or business relationship. Know that all messages will come directly from us and we will not share, sell, or rent your email to anyone.  And, we will always provide an easy way to opt-out or unsubscribe at anytime.

Wild Whatcom policies are subject to change at any time. For questions, please contact us: info@wildwhatcom.org.