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We find mappers for schools. Our goal is to make it easy for any school or non-profit youth-serving organization in the United States to get an orienteering map made of their school or a nearby park to help in teaching orienteering, with the map drawn to international mapping standards. The OUSA YMP will take information from mappers and schools, and match them up, and further pair them with a YMP map consultant.

The purpose of this program is threefold:

  1. To spread orienteering to as many youth as possible.

  2. To develop a self-sustaining process to match youth-serving non-profit organizations desiring maps with orienteering mappers and to provide a limited number of grants for map development.

  3. To provide a forum to share mapping practices and develop professional collaboration among our growing population of mappers.


Youth organizations pay OUSA for the creation of a map. Grants may be available to youth organizations making their first map; see the Grant Rubric for details. Mappers and map consultants are paid by OUSA. The youth organization must provide someone willing to work with the mapper to check the map, because the mapper will be working remotely. Field checkers are not paid by OUSA; rather, the youth organization is expected to provide this resource as part of getting a map made. For additional details on cost, see the Costs section. 

OUSA members and others who wish to support this program may make a donation to OUSA and add a note that it is intended for the Youth Mapping Program. Mappers and map consultants may volunteer some or all of their time. 

Process Overview

For details on the process, please see the YMP Processes page. This includes information about how to apply to be a mapper, how to apply for a map, how to apply for a map grant, the approval process, cost, and communications.

Finished Maps and Current Projects

Follow this link for a list of current maps and projects.

Mappers' Handbook

Mappers should be familiar with all the guidelines and information documented in the Mappers' Handbook. This includes the YMP map project process, working with youth organizations, communication with OUSA, and our requirements of YMP maps. YMP maps should:

  • Meet the ISSprOM standard, with the ISSprOM School Symbol set add-on for larger scale maps. Reasonable deviations may be allowed with a good rationale. General reference:

  • Use a scale appropriate for the project; typically this would range between 1:1000 and 1:4000.

  • Use an OCAD YMP set of branding and layout symbols and template (provided by OUSA) for a standard “look and feel” .

  • Provide a legend.

  • Include a scale bar. Often schools end up printing the map at different scales, either on purpose or accidentally, and the scale bar will always remain correct.

  • Be created in OCAD or OOM. If in OOM, the map should be saved in OCAD 12 format.

  • Be shared with OUSA: Copies of the completed map should go to OUSA, and those involved in the map creation (base map, field checker, updater, and so on), as well as the youth organization making the request.

  • Be owned by the organization(s) who paid for the map to be made: OUSA (if a grant was made) and/or the youth organization. The mapper will not retain copyright of the final map. 

Map Consultants

Please see the Consultants' Handbook.

Each mapping project is overseen by a map consultant. The map consultant provides advice to the mapper and feedback to the mapper and ensures that maps meet the YMP guidelines. Any recommendations that may benefit other mappers should be shared in the mappers’ forum (

Mappers are also encouraged to share their progress directly on the mappers’ forum for advice and feedback from other mappers.

To become a map consultant, first apply to be a YMP mapper. 

Field Checking

Field checking will be done by a member of the YO. This has multiple purposes: (1) it ensures that the YO is contributing to the creation of the map, thus making them more invested in it; (2) it creates greater understanding on the part of the YO about orienteering maps, and (3) it gives the mapper the opportunity to talk in more depth with the YO about the use of the map. In some cases, the mapper may do the field checking themselves, but in that case we ask that the mapper still find opportunities to discuss orienteering teaching with the YO. 

In Remote Mapping and Field Checking Tips, we provide detailed instructions for mappers on interacting with their YO field checker. 

Resources for Teaching Orienteering

Please see the Orienteering USA website for teaching resources.

Additional Information


YMPYouth Map Program
YOYouth-serving organization or school

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