We’ve known for a few years now that hunting numbers are on the decline. State and Federal agencies have leapt into action with programs centered on the Recruitment, Retention and Reactivation of hunters. As baby-boomers age out of the sport, it’s become more important than ever to educate and activate emerging generations to ensure that hunting and other outdoor pursuits continue to thrive.

Mentorship programs have emerged as a key part of the puzzle. If you’re a parent, you know that you are the ultimate mentor to your kids. The skills and wisdom you impart on them now (even if it’s received with scoffs or eye-rolls) becomes intertwined with their values as they grow-up, setting the tone for the rest of their lives. Recent research also supports the importance of bringing your kids up in the outdoors — it is the only way to ensure that they become life-long participators in outdoor activities.

Ready for some good news? Outdoor participation in general has continued a steady climb, with almost half (49%) of the United States population participating in at least one outdoor activity on an annual basis. Some of the more popular activities include fishing, hiking and camping, with activities like wildlife viewing and photography on the rise.

Whether your family-thing is hunting, fishing, hiking, camping…keep in mind that you’re doing good work bringing up the next generation of Outsiders and Venku is here to make it easier.

Need some ideas?

Take a Hike — Cultivate woodland hunting skills early-on by taking a walk in the woods with your kids. Encourage them to follow these tips to be as quiet as possible. Ask questions: What kinds of things do you hear? Look for animal tracks.

Fish on — Visit a local fishing hole and experiment with different kinds of bait. What kind of bait attracts which fish? Have some fun with it! For instance, did you know bass will eat chicken nuggets?! Oh, and peeps

Youth Hunt — Want to take your kids on a hunt with you? The owners of this property in Nebraska want to help families enjoy the outdoors together! They offer packages for turkey, deer and predator hunting with discounts for youth hunters. Plus, their property features a cabin, pond, beehives and chickens!

Explore — Search for treasure! Properties like this one boast beautiful wildflowers, rock hunting and mushroom foraging depending on the time of the year. Start a nature collection from found objects like leaves and feathers. Or take your kids on a nature scavenger hunt to see what you can find!

How do you enjoy the outdoors with your family? Follow us on Facebook or Instagram and share your photos with hashtag #OutsiderKids.