PLATINUM2024

ODC Network

Building a better community by connecting people, land, and nature.

aka Outdoor Discovery Center   |   Holland, MI   |  https://outdoordiscovery.org/

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Mission

Advancing outdoor education and conservation in West Michigan.

Notes from the nonprofit

We believe that: - We are the caretakers of our natural world - Unique natural places to experience the beauty and wonder of the environment are valuable resources to the community - There is value in restoring, protecting and connecting natural environments - Increased emphasis on the environment will improve the community’s quality of life - All people should engage in active and integrated learning to understand our environment and how to preserve it - People are happier, healthier and more satisfied if they have the opportunity to enjoy the outdoors - Promoting conservation and wildlife management will improve our ecosystems - We can influence current and future generations to make environmentally responsible decisions - Collaboration is the pathway to connecting and protecting our natural resources - Historical cultures and their interactions with the environment provide a perspective for life today. We support efforts to protect native resources and sites.

Ruling year info

1983

CEO

Mr. Travis Williams

Main address

4214 56th St

Holland, MI 49423 USA

Show more contact info

EIN

38-2461102

NTEE code info

Environmental Education and Outdoor Survival Programs (C60)

Other Services (D60)

Natural Resource Conservation and Protection (C30)

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

Sign in or create an account to view Form(s) 990 for 2022, 2021 and 2020.
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Communication

Programs and results

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Spending time learning and playing in nature not only helps kids do better in school and improves their ability to learn but has profound physical, emotional and social health benefits. However, the average child spends less than an hour outdoors each day, well under the two hours that are provided to maximum security prison inmates in the US. The lack of outdoor time has led to a great deal of negative impacts on today’s children including detrimental health outcomes like obesity, diabetes, stress and ADHD, poor social and emotional wellness, and difficulty achieving academic standards. ODC provides outdoor learning opportunities for young learners and school-aged children to address this. Additionally, ODC Network works to address land and water quality issues that impact the ecological health of the area, including waterways and land that directly impact Lake Michigan, an important natural resource.

Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

ODC Nature-Based Preschools

ODC Preschools runs 3 nature-based preschool for 3 and 4 year olds located in West Michigan.

Population(s) Served
Infants and toddlers
Children
Families

We offer a variety of programs that meet curriculum standards. Educators are encouraged to work with staff to customize their program including activities, demonstrations, and key concepts which pertain to the Michigan Department of Education’s teaching standards. Our two main categories for programs are Natural History and Cultural History.

Population(s) Served

Education Network staff provide support for area schools, helping teachers implement outdoor education practices that take learning beyond the four walls of a classroom. To do this Education Network staff assist with co-planning outdoor education lesson, co-teaching outdoor classes, and providing professional development to teaching staff. Education Network currently partners with 27 area schools, impacting thousands of students each year by bringing outdoor education experiences to them.

Population(s) Served

ODC offers a wide-variety of outdoor education and conservation programming for community members of all ages (from toddlerhood to older adults). This includes programs such as ODC summer camps, sustainability series, library programs, and a community-wide water festival.

Population(s) Served
Students
Students

ODC provides numerous nature preserves that are free and open to the public from dawn to dusk. The most visited nature preserve is ODC's Outdoor Discovery Center in Allegan County, MI. This preserve is 165-acres and includes a Birds of Prey facility, accessible walking trails, a nature-playscape, Visitor Center, and fishing ponds.

Population(s) Served
Children and youth
Children and youth
Children and youth
Adults
Children and youth
Adults
Families

ODC provides land management for the community. This includes native prairie restoration, invasive species management, streambank restoration, best management practices for farmland, green stormwater infrastructure education, and many other services as they relate to land and water quality improvement in the West Michigan region.

Population(s) Served

Where we work

Awards

Our results

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

How does this organization measure their results? It's a hard question but an important one.

Number of participants engaged in programs

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Type of Metric

Other - describing something else

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

Number of participants engaged in a specific program with the ODC Network.

Number of students educated through field trips

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Children and youth

Related Program

School Programs

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Holding steady

Context Notes

Number of students grades preschool through college who participate in educational programming with the ODC Network.

Number of conservation actions at site(s)

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Type of Metric

Input - describing resources we use

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

Native prairie restorations, tree plantings, invasive species removal/management, Hemlock woolly adelgid monitoring, wetland management, green stormwater infrastructure, community education.

Our Sustainable Development Goals

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn more about Sustainable Development Goals.

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

In 2000, a local nonprofit Wildlife Unlimited of Allegan and Ottawa Counties formed a partnership with the Ottawa Area Intermediate School District to create an outdoor education center that would serve the Allegan and Ottawa counties schools and community. This entity was the Outdoor Discovery Center (ODC). Nine years later, the ODC merged with the Macatawa Greenway Partnership to leverage and expand their missions. That was the beginning of a significant growth period for the ODC. Today, 10 total business divisions have been developed that drive our goals to redefine education, restore and conserve land and water, and to make our community the best place to live, work, play and learn. Our breadth of services led to a name change to the ODC Network which serves as the parent organization that performs essential, mission specific work to drive community change, growth, and impact in conservation and education.

ODC’s board approved a three-year strategic plan in 2021 for 2022-2024. Strategic goals include: 1) Increase the
annual impact of Outdoor Discovery Preschools, 2) Renovate and expand ODC facilities to better meet the ODC mission, 3) Create a culture of belonging at the ODC, 4) Establish the ODC as a leader in sustainability education and services within our community, 5) Increase visitation, engagement, and investment in the ODC, and to 6) Continue to support K-12 Education through the prioritization of the ODC Education Network as a key business line in the organization.

ODC has over 100 high-qualified staff that assist in meeting the goals of the organization. Additionally, ODC has a strong funding model that generates 65-70% of our income through programs and services, relying on 30-35% of income from charitable gifts and grants.

Last year, more than 95,000 people participated in programming at our site or at an event in the community. This is more than 8 times the number of participants from 10 years ago.

ODC opened our third nature-based preschool in 2022, Dragonflies Discovery Preschool. ODC is partnering with area businesses to explore opening additional childcare facilities that serve retail/manufacturing employees.

How we listen

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Seeking feedback from people served makes programs more responsive and effective. Here’s how this organization is listening.

done We shared information about our current feedback practices.
  • How is your organization using feedback from the people you serve?

    To identify and remedy poor client service experiences, To identify bright spots and enhance positive service experiences, To make fundamental changes to our programs and/or operations, To inform the development of new programs/projects, To identify where we are less inclusive or equitable across demographic groups, To strengthen relationships with the people we serve, To understand people's needs and how we can help them achieve their goals

  • Which of the following feedback practices does your organization routinely carry out?

    We collect feedback from the people we serve at least annually, We look for patterns in feedback based on demographics (e.g., race, age, gender, etc.), We engage the people who provide feedback in looking for ways we can improve in response, We act on the feedback we receive, We tell the people who gave us feedback how we acted on their feedback

  • What challenges does the organization face when collecting feedback?

    We don't have any major challenges to collecting feedback

Financials

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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

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Connect with nonprofit leaders

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  • Analyze a variety of pre-calculated financial metrics
  • Access beautifully interactive analysis and comparison tools
  • Compare nonprofit financials to similar organizations

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lock

Connect with nonprofit leaders

Subscribe

Build relationships with key people who manage and lead nonprofit organizations with GuideStar Pro. Try a low commitment monthly plan today.

  • Analyze a variety of pre-calculated financial metrics
  • Access beautifully interactive analysis and comparison tools
  • Compare nonprofit financials to similar organizations

Want to see how you can enhance your nonprofit research and unlock more insights? Learn More about GuideStar Pro.

ODC Network

Board of directors
as of 01/25/2024
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board chair

Mr Eric De Witt

Lucid Architecture

Term: 2023 -

Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • Board orientation and education
    Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations? Yes
  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? Yes
  • Ethics and transparency
    Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year? Yes
  • Board composition
    Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership? Yes
  • Board performance
    Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years? Yes

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 1/4/2024

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? Candid partnered with CHANGE Philanthropy on this demographic section.

Leadership

The organization's leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
White/Caucasian/European
Gender identity
Male, Not transgender
Sexual orientation
Heterosexual or Straight
Disability status
Person without a disability

Race & ethnicity

Gender identity

Transgender Identity

Sexual orientation

No data

Disability

No data

Equity strategies

Last updated: 01/20/2023

GuideStar partnered with Equity in the Center - an organization that works to shift mindsets, practices, and systems to increase racial equity - to create this section. Learn more

Data
  • We review compensation data across the organization (and by staff levels) to identify disparities by race.
  • We analyze disaggregated data and root causes of race disparities that impact the organization's programs, portfolios, and the populations served.
  • We disaggregate data to adjust programming goals to keep pace with changing needs of the communities we support.
  • We employ non-traditional ways of gathering feedback on programs and trainings, which may include interviews, roundtables, and external reviews with/by community stakeholders.
  • We disaggregate data by demographics, including race, in every policy and program measured.
  • We have long-term strategic plans and measurable goals for creating a culture such that one’s race identity has no influence on how they fare within the organization.
Policies and processes
  • We use a vetting process to identify vendors and partners that share our commitment to race equity.
  • We seek individuals from various race backgrounds for board and executive director/CEO positions within our organization.
  • We have community representation at the board level, either on the board itself or through a community advisory board.
  • We help senior leadership understand how to be inclusive leaders with learning approaches that emphasize reflection, iteration, and adaptability.
  • We measure and then disaggregate job satisfaction and retention data by race, function, level, and/or team.
  • We engage everyone, from the board to staff levels of the organization, in race equity work and ensure that individuals understand their roles in creating culture such that one’s race identity has no influence on how they fare within the organization.