I think it might be really hard to do something nationally, within OUSA. Maybe we need to work hard in one area, grow like a cancer, and then spread outwards. Or like a mold? Send spores across the country? All this talk about doing lots of stuff does make me want to move back to Boston.
I´ve been following the discussions about the ED and OUSA in general and realize there´s not much likeness to Sweden, but...
* If I compare the geography I notice that Sweden would - roughly - fit into the area between Norfolk, Virgina and Northern Maine.
* Within that area there are definitely enough dedicated and resourceful people to do a lot of good on the local/regional level. So maybe that may be one area to start as Cristina suggests.
* As is obvious from the work of Erin, Barb and a lot of others it is possible to change things with a lot of hard work - and there are no shortcuts. A small group of enthusiastic people can really do wonders - and often get more done than a bigger but more rigid organisation.
* When good things pop up in different areas they tend to spread and get copied by others.
I have lots more comments but can´t word them right now...
I think we can effect lots of change at the regional level. Let's do that.
Here is a suggestion. Start a not-for-profit company dedicated to growing the sport of orienteering in a specific city/region. Then fill the board of directors of the company with orienteering friends that share the same vision (Alex's coalition). Raise money through crowd funding to develop a youth program and navigation races. AND/OR Partner with the existing clubs in the region through a loan or grant with specific targets for growth. Essentially request to take over and manage youth programs, athletic development and alternative events. have milestones that show the ROI the club would get. ie., offer the club x% of the revenue that is scaled to various levels of success.
In a sense that is what DontGetLost has done. We are a 'just do it' (to borrow a PG term and approach) type of club so for us we were able to make changes within the club structure.
Its worth noting that we are happy to partner with other organizations to develop junior programs. We have had success already in helping FWOC develop SOGO.
FYI: ARK (that serves a population of about 1.5 million people) had revenues last year equal to about 40% of OUSA (that serves a population 200x greater). Our in-kind sponsorships $$ amount exceeded that of OUSA and our total number of employees also exceeded that of OUSA. ARK has tremendous ROI and my experience it is a much better ROI than from top-down programs. Ahem ED (not Boston Ed) BUT you know an ED.
I don't mean that out of disrespect to those volunteers doing wonderful things at the National level. DGL relies on a lot of hard work from OC and OOA volunteers. But my experience is that you can effect change quicker and grow things faster from the local/regional level.
Boston and Seattle should be National Training Centres for US orienteering. (In Canada it should be Vancouver and Ottawa or Hamilton). My club's top juniors had a great time in Boston again this year. Last year we hosted Ottawa to a training camp. I think we can do more with these pockets of top orienteers. Perhaps we should have an inter-regional training weekend in the Syracuse area which is sorta midpoint between Ottawa, Boston and Hamilton. Maybe I'm getting ahead of myself but i get excited when other groups are looking for change. Good luck guys.