Rippleffect announced Thursday that it has received a $50,000 grant that will allow it to provide outdoor and wilderness adventures to students at Deering and Portland high schools.

Rippleffect currently offers outdoor leadership education programs to students at Casco Bay High School in Portland. They will take trips this year to Douglas Mountain in Sebago, the White Mountains of New Hampshire, and will participate in a kayaking expedition on Casco Bay.

But thanks to a $50,000 grant from the National Recreation Foundation, the nonprofit organization will be able to expand the Rippleffect Outdoor Leadership Education (ROLE) to Portland’s two other high schools. Six students from each school will be able to participate.

“This is an exciting development,” Rippleffect Executive Director Adam Shepherd said in statement issued Thursday. “Now we can begin laying the foundational work at Deering High School and Portland High School to launch the program next school year.”

Shepherd said Rippleffect’s outdoor experiences help students build confidence and self-esteem. The organization piloted the ROLE program last year at Casco Bay High School, a program that benefited 12 students.

Rippleffect’s ROLE program began in 2010 as a grant-funded, after school program for seventh- and eighth-graders at Lincoln and Lyman Moore middle schools in Portland. The program has since been offered at middle schools in South Portland, Freeport and Falmouth and has an alumni base of over 400 participants.

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