Outdoor, non competitive skills training and expedition grants are available: return to Grants available page.

Click on the links to view their reports.  We look forward to receiving the more recent  reports, following their courses/expeditions, and we will publish them once we receive them..

The following Educational Expedition Grants have been awarded:

A team from the University of Glasgow have been awarded £500 to carry out research in Iceland on the effects of pollution and climate change on the sub-Arctic ecosystem and its native species.

Isabel McLeish has been awarded £300 towards her Artist Residency placement in La Wayaka Current in the Atacama Desert in Chile.  Originally planned for October 2020 the placement has been postponed, due to Covid 19.

A group of 6 students from University of the Highlands and Islands received an Educational Expedition Grant of £1,000 towards a research project in Namibia.

Kai Westwell was awarded £300 towards his educational expedition to Madagascar

The following Expedition Grants have been awarded:

Lucy Hodge has been awarded £300 for a solo bikepackinging trip returning from Lesbos to Bristol in June/July 2021.  Unnfortunately, due to Covid 19, this expedition has been cancelled.

Mary Nzoka was awarded 500 Euros towards her ascent of Mount Kenya in March 2020.  The expedition was postponed due to Covid 19.

Mark Robson and Simon Richardson received £300 towards their expedition to Oasis Peak on the Alaska/British Columbia border in May, 2019

Ethan Berman and Antony Wood received £272 towards an Expedition to Denali, the highest mountain in Alaska.

Brothers Calum and Eadan Cunningham received £1500 for a climbing expedition, also to Madagascar, with Robbie Phillips:  Madagascan Report – Drive  Madagascan Report – Bouldering (Eadan)   Madagascan Report – Big Walling (Calum), Conclusion and photos

Eadan’s bouldering video can be seen here:

Alaister Lee’s film, Blood Moon, shown at the Brit Rock Film Fetival 2018

Christy Logan (Part1 and  Part 2) , Beth Maciver and Ruth Ferguson have received between £150 – £300 each towards their Duke of Edinburgh Gold award expeditions

The following skills training grants have been awarded:

We are particularly enthusiastic to award our skills grants to volunteers in training or rescue organisations where the effect of the grant will help others.

Bradley Brennand has been awarded £150 towards his PADI Deep Diver award. Date to be confirmed.

Peter Nelson has been awarded £250 for his Summer Mountain Leader assessment at Glenmore Lodge.  Originally planned for summer 2020 this assessment has been postponed until July 2021 due to Covid 19.

Sarah Lund was awarded £250 towards her Summer Mountain Leader course at Glenmore Lodge in October 2020.  This course was delayed from earlier in the year due to Covid 19.

Matthew Blevins received £145 towards his Mountain Bike Leader (level 2) course in September 2020 at Glenmore Lodge.  Originally planned for May 2020 this was postponed due to Covid 19.  He has also been awarded £55 towards a subsequent assessment.

Anna Cornelia Frederiksen was awarded £200 towards her Winter Mountain skills training at Glenmore Lodge in February 2020.  This funding was matched by Glenmore Lodge under our partnership scheme with them.

Magalie Castelin, who won a voucher for a skills training or expedition grant in the raffle at the Ceilidh in January 2018, was awarded £500 towards Snow and Ice Climbing Improver’s Course – advanced level.

Emma Atkinson received £200 towards her Mountaineering Instructors Award at Glenmore Lodge and a further £100 towards the subsequent assessment.

 Gemma Hendry  received £250 towards her Winter Mountain Leader assessment at Glenmore Lodge

Finlay Johnston, aged 14, received £150 for winter climbing training in Lochaber

Duncan Buchanan, member of a  Scottish Mountain Rescue Team, received £200 towards his Summer Mountain Leader course at Glenmore Lodge

Kym Scobie received £250 towards Snowcamp Excel Programme

Catriona Webster received £100 towards her Mountain Leader Course, and has received a further £100 for the subsequent assessment.

Connel Laing recieved £75 towards his Introduction to Mountain Biking training with Cycle Wild Scotland, August 2017

Dominic Lloyd has been awarded £200 towards RYA Day skipper practical sailing courwhich he will use to assist in training at Dundee University and Avoch sailing clubs.

Stephanie Provan has been awarded £130 towards Level 2 mountain bike leadership award – to assist with Primary School after school activities.

Chris Redmond, chairman and volunteer coach at Aboyne Canoe Club, received £200 towards courses in Moderate water Endorsement and 5 star whitewater training.

Alistair McDonald, a member of a Scottish Mountain Rescue Team, has been awarded a skills grant of £154 towards his Winter Mountain Leader course.


The Neil Mackenzie Adventure Grant

Due to COVID 19 restrictions many of the trips planned for 2020 have been postponed or cancelled.

2021: VOC Neil Mackenzie Adventure Grants will be announced in March 2021.   This award is jointly funded by VOC (The University of British Columbia Varsity Outdoor Club) and The Neil Mackenzie.

2020: VOC Neil Mackenzie Adventure Grants were announced in March 2020.

Natalie Maslowski and Zoe Hackett plan a self propelled trip to the Isle of Skye and the Outer Hebrides, in Scotland.  Originally planned for summer 2020 the trip has been postponed, due to Covid 19.

Nick Hindley, Harlin Brandfold, Duncan Pawson and one other are planning a “Big Wall” climbing expedition to Pangea in the remote Coastal Range in British Columbia. Originally planned for summer 2020 the trip has been postponed, due to Covid 19.

2019: The fourth VOC Neil Mackenzie Adventure Grants were announced in March 2019.   Jointly funded by VOC (The University of British Columbia Varsity Outdoor Club) and The Neil Mackenzie Trust the names of the recipients were:  Anirban (JoJo) Das will be going to bolt new crags for sport climbing in Southern India, in December. This trip has been delayed due to injury and COVID.   Maureen Nadeau came to Scotland  in May to cycle the amazing Highland Trail 550.  It is 885km (mostly single hill tracks) with a total ascent of over 16,000m. We look forward to her report. Else Bosman and Joe O’Brien are stayed closer to home and carried out a multi dicepline self propelled adventure in the Coastal Mountains of British Columbia. An Expedition in Our Own Backyard

2018: The third VOC Neil Mackenzie Adventure Grants have been announced.   Jointly funded by VOC (The University of British Columbia Varsity Outdoor Club) and The Neil Mackenzie Trust the names of the recipients were announced in March, 2018.  Ben Clark and Jess Landing came to Scotland in spring 2019 to ice climb in the Cairngorms and Ben Nevis areas. 

In 2017 we had two girls teams who came over to Scotland this year.  Kelsey Miller and Carly Peterson set out on a trail running, scrambling and climbing adventure in the Glencoe and Glen Nevis area and Cora Skaien and Nicole Barrette aimed to  climb a number of mountains following routes originally climbed by the Ladies Scottish Climbing Club.

The following recieved the 2016 VOC awards:

Artem Bylinskii has now completed his Scottish Adventure from Canada.  He visited Bell’s Bothy on Skye, attended our Ceilidh Day in Farr and climbed in the Cairngorms, Ben Nevis, Glencoe, An Teallach, Skye and cycled in Torridon. See Artem’s trip report here.

Mike Cancilla and Lizzy Duguay came to Scotland to cycle from Glasgow to the Outer Hebrides in the summer (2016).  While they were in the islands they learnt something about Mike’s Scottish family roots (the MacNeils of Barra) and visited the bothy on Skye.  See their trip report here.

Stuart Higgs and Spencer Rasmussen undertook their challenge in British Columbia in August.  It was a combined kayak and trekking adventure.  Accessing their route via the Jervis Inlet they hoped  to trek on foot on a pioneering alpine traverse around the headwaters of the Skwawka River. See their report here