Monday, August 25, 2008

What is an RTV and Why Does Anokijig Have One?

Have you ever seen this orange vehicle running around Anokijig and wondered what it is or where it came from? This vehicle is a Kubota RTV900 and it came to us through the generosity of one of our board members, Ken Cavan and his wife, Melody.

We're not sure what the "RTV" stands for, but we think "Really Tremendous Vehicle" fits pretty well. The RTV is like an ATV, only larger and more versatile. It can comfortably carry two passengers, while hauling a load in it's bed and towing a trailer. It also has four-wheel drive, which makes a big difference around Camp's more rustic roads and is powered by a very efficient diesel engine.

For many years, Anokijig has relied on large, V8-powered pickup trucks to assist our staff and volunteers in various projects around Camp. While effective, these trucks were often overkill, because they were so big and used so much fuel, when sometimes all we needed was something just a little bit bigger than an ATV to get the job done. From hauling camper luggage and hay for the horses, to putting up fenceline (as pictured above), the RTV really gets the job done for us and does so at a fraction of the operating cost and environmental impact of the pickup trucks we'd have to use otherwise.

If Anokijig had unlimited resources, we would've purchased one of these vehicles a long time ago. Unfortunately, we have bigger budgetary fish to fry and have to rely on the generosity of our donors for some of these fantastic additions.

That's where Ken & Melody Cavan come into the picture. Even before becoming a board member for Anokijig, Ken had been a long-time supporter of Anokijig and made regular trips to Camp every year, with Meldoy accompanying him on many of those visits.

These visits gave them both more intimate knowledge of our daily operations and allowed them to identify areas where help was most needed. They knew that by purchasing this RTV for Anokijig, they would not only be adding a useful vehicle to our fleet, but significantly reducing our operating costs and carbon footprint for many years to come.

Ken & Melody have often commented that one of their favorite things about donating to Anokijig is that their gifts go exactly where they were intended. If they want to give Camp an RTV, boat engine or a saddle, they can do that and know that their donation isn't being siphoned off by phantom administrative expenses or redirected to a parent organization's bottom line. We're so thankful for their support and involvement with Camp. It wouldn't be the same place without them!

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