Outdoor Adventure

I was reading up on Outdoor Adventure programs and came across a statement made by psychologist James Neill, who has worked as an outdoor education instructor and researcher, stating “human potential can be unlocked through challenging experiences in supportive group environments”. It brought me back to a time about 12 years ago when I volunteered at a summer camp for children with cancer.

It was a week
long experience, but taught me far more than I could ever imagine and opened my eyes to the power of activities that elevate community and personal growth. One of the many moments that had a great impact on me took place at the outdoor adventure program zip line. I watched (and cheered on) a young disabled girl, who needed the assistance of a wheelchair to get around, make her way up the climbing tower and across the zip line. Through encouragement and support she challenged her fears, showed fierce determination and perseverance, and celebrated an accomplishment well deserved. I know she felt a great sense of empowerment and I believe the entire group got a lot out of being a part of her experience.

Outdoor adventure programs are a staple in summer camps today and offer an innovative approach to teaching camper’s leadership, patience and teamwork, in a fun and exciting environment. These programs are all about trying new things, trusting one another, and working through difficult situations as a team. That is why at Camp Iroquois Springs we offer an extensive Outdoor Adventure program, where campers learn about themselves and the world around them while having fun. Our program provides a physical challenge, where campers conquer fears and work together with persistence and perseverance to accomplish their goals. Through participation in our high and low elements ropes course, climbing tower, rappelling wall, mountain biking, rock climbing, overnight camping trips, whitewater rafting and canoe trips on the Delaware River, campers build bonds with new friends, and unlock their human potential. And it’s not just our campers that benefit from this program. We have

our staff members participate in outdoor adventure activities during staff orientation as a way to break down barriers and for them to get to know one another. Just last year we added two new high elements, an “aerial adventure course” and a “giant swing”. Both elements truly encompass the meaning of teamwork and cooperation, and really push kids outside their comfort zone within a framework of safety and support. We love the value our Outdoor Adventure program brings to camp and look forward to another great summer of fun, challenges, and excitement.