How can an outdoor wilderness program help your troubled teen?

How many ways can an Outdoor Education program or Wilderness Camp help your troubled teen? Let me count the ways. To begin, one of the major benefits for everyone – staff and students – is the setting. The camps are in the great outdoors, in beautiful wilderness areas and the setting and surrounds alone are enough to lift your spirits. Virgin forests, stunning mountains and sparkling streams, rivers and lakes are literally at your doorstep in many of these camps. If nothing else the scenery is superb.

But there is much more to help your troubled teen. Staff members are trained in counseling and therapy and your troubled teen will work one on one and in small groups to move through the issues causing problems at home. This is not a holiday camp, far from it, and regular school studies are combined with therapeutic sessions to enable the residents to build up their self-esteem and confidence.

Along the way they’ll learn a whole bunch of skills such as caring for animals, kayaking, climbing, camp-fire cooking and outdoor survival. Everything is a challenge but with fully-qualified and caring staff accompanying every activity, wilderness programs have an enviable reputation for doing wonders for the behavior, attitude and confidence of troubled teens. Many are troubled no more.

One of the great strengths of a wilderness camp is the combination of therapy with outdoor adventure. Your teen needs their particular problem dealt with but at the same time they need a new challenge, something exciting and worthwhile to help them turn around their mood and lifestyle. The fact that your teen is in the wilderness and part of a team needing to survive is a wonderful opportunity for personal growth.

And it’s not just the skills each teen can learn. It’s the opportunity to become a leader, to learn how to get on with others and to be part of a success story. Self-confidence is available in spades for any troubled teen who successfully tackles their time in camp.

It’s easy for camps to promote themselves as success stories as many do but when independent journalists and even academic surveys show a positive turnaround in the life of participants, all such claims are sound.

Healthy living in a healthy atmosphere is two major benefits as your trouble teen gets into the open fresh air, participates in plenty of healthy exercise and eats well. No fast food or access to drugs and alcohol. This is a health farm with a difference and the needs of your growing teen’s body are well and truly catered for.

If your teen has emotional and behavioral problems, there are wilderness camps which specialize in these areas. You’ll find therapy sessions, outdoor adventures and a program which concentrates on individual goal-setting. As each troubled teen moves forward to eventually achieve their own goal, the sense of achievement is fantastic and makes their time spent in camp totally worthwhile.

Time spent in a wilderness camp usually ranges between 30 and 60 days with every one of them time well spent.

Here are additional resources you might be interested in:

The benefits of Wilderness Camps

Are Wilderness Programs for Troubled Teens?