As a lifelong hunter and NRA Endowment member, I am proud to be a part of an organization that supports mainstream all-American gun owners and exists to protect our Second Amendment, hunting and shooting sports traditions. The rollout of this NRA Women website is just the latest example of the NRA’s commitment to serving and protecting our way of life. Just on the hunting front alone, I wish every American hunter understood the extent to which the NRA works on behalf of all hunters—NRA members and non-members alike—starting with the launch of the NRA Women website ...
For some history, when the NRA was chartered in November 1871, a key objective was to promote hunter safety and to defend hunting as a shooting sport and necessary method of fostering the conservation of our renewable wildlife resources. Today the NRA is the largest organization of hunters with 3.5 million hunters in its 5-million-plus membership ranks. The NRA’s strength and political firepower comes from its membership as we NRA members take pride in standing united on the issues impacting hunting’s future.
Fellow NRA women like me who support our friends, families, co-workers and communities keep tabs on the NRA’s eternal vigilance on the legislative and political front and witness the difference the NRA makes in defending our freedoms every day. As the NRA Institute for Legislative Action (NRA-ILA) fights to protect hunting’s future, many times we hunters never even hear about a proposed anti-hunting law because NRA-ILA already has shut it down. Likewise, when it comes to NRA General Operations, the NRA’s safety and training arm, the NRA offers hunter safety, education and training programs for hunters at every skill level, from the NRA’s free state-of-the-art online hunter education course and new online hunter education refresher course for experienced hunters to the NRA Youth Hunter Education Challenge, America’s premier youth hunter event launched in 1985, and more. On that front, some hunters may not be aware that 70 years ago it was the NRA that created America’s first-ever hunter education course in conjunction with the state of New York in 1949. And then there is NRA Publications and the NRA’s American Hunter https://www.americanhunter.org/magazine—the largest all-hunting monthly hunting publication worldwide, delivering one million readers.
And NRA efforts go even further. Here are just a few extras the NRA does to support mainstream, all-American hunters 24/7.
NRA Affiliated Clubs, Associations and Ranges
Did you know the NRA Clubs and Associations Department provides services and assistance to a network of more than 15,000 NRA-affiliated clubs, associations and businesses? For starters, countless hunter-backed NRA state associations such as the California Rifle and Pistol Association and Texas State Rifle Association to the Chelsea Rod and Gun Club in Michigan are all part of the NRA’s grassroots network of affiliated organizations that put the NRA in the forefront of community action. The department’s quarterly NRA Club Connection magazine keeps hunters and shooters connected by informing them about NRA programs, advice on range services and grant funding opportunities.
Going the next step, the NRA’s Range Services Department provides resources for public and private shooting ranges as we hunters and shooters seek out more places to hone our skills. For those unaware, services to range owners and operators include on-site range maintenance, educational seminars, grants and marketing. It also oversees a dedicated Range Technical Team comprised of a national network of volunteers trained in shooting range development, design and operations. The hunting- and shooting-related events these facilities go on to offer further provide for hunting’s future.
NRA Certified Instructors
Just as important, or perhaps even more so, is the fact that the NRA, through its Education and Training Division, trains more than one million people in firearm safety and marksmanship each year. This alone is amazing. The NRA accomplishes this through a network of 125,000-plus NRA-certified instructors, 8,000 coaches and 2,200 training counselors. As we women remain the fastest-growing segment of firearms ownership, whether you know other women who want to learn firearm basics to begin hunting or you know a few seasoned hunters and shooters who may be interested in becoming NRA-certified instructors themselves, courses cover the gamut. For more information, click here. To find an NRA course near you, click here and type in your zip code or city and state and select a search radius.
The NRA Foundation Grants
Did you know The NRA Foundation, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization that raises tax-deductible contributions to support the firearm-related public interest activities of the NRA and like-minded organizations? It builds partnerships and provides grants to fund programs supporting a shared vision.
As a testament to the NRA’s commitment to ensuring the future of our Second Amendment heritage, since its establishment in 1990, The NRA Foundation has provided more than $398 million in grant funding, much of which has benefitted hunting-related endeavors. Over the last five years alone, it has funded nearly $10.6 million in grants and programs specifically for hunting and wildlife conservation.
Why is this so important? In the words of NRA past president (2013-2015), longtime NRA Board member and founder of the NRA Hunters’ Leadership Forum, “History shows what happens when lawful hunting comes under attack: Wildlife suffers, funding for wildlife conservation is gutted and hunting—and all that goes with it—is diminished.”
Bring More Hunters into the NRA Loop!
Share this story with other hunters or aspiring hunters in your daily life. For 149 years, the NRA has been here to help so encourage others to take advantage of the programs and services the NRA provides to the hunting community. I believe hunters will appreciate the information and will want to take advantage of the opportunities and services the NRA provides. No other hunting organization in America does more for American hunters than the NRA. If hunters knew more about what the NRA does—often behind the scenes—wouldn’t they all be NRA members?
For a run down of what the NRA accomplished for American hunters over the past year alone, click here.