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ONLINE JOURNAL OF THE INTERNATIONAL CHILD AND YOUTH CARE NETWORK (CYC-Net) ISSN 1605-7406

ISSUE 119  JANUARY 2009   CONTENTS   HOME PAGE

ADVENTURE

Outward Bound

David Muir

Outward Bound is one of the world's leading international non-profit, experiential education organisations. Outward Bound programmes are designed to positively effect change in the lives of young people through outdoor activities. The participants face challenges that teach them to draw on their inner resources. The objective is to develop leadership, communication, integration and both team and personal development skills. The primary focus is on sustainability - through reflection and mediation the individual will be able to share these experiences and positively impact the lives of those around them. The youth empowerment and leadership programme in turn gives youth at risk the opportunity to change paradigms in their communities by making the right choices.

Mission Statement
"To empower young South Africans with the character, will, values and self-belief to live their lives to the full and to consistently make the right choices.'

Outward Bound South Africa (OBSA) is part of a global network of more than 50 Outward Bound schools in 35 different countries with access to cutting-edge research and methodologies.
Outward Bound South Africa (OBSA) was founded 1992, in the aftermath of apartheid. Today, OBSA's central focus is to impact on the lives of young people in South Africa who have been marginalised and disadvantaged by various factors. It helps people develop life skills, compassion and a determined, positive attitude toward life and its many challenges.

Outward Bound activities
Safety is the backbone of Outward Bound's operation and is ingrained in its culture. It ensures world-class safety standards with regular international audits. On an Outward Bound course participants may find themselves facing a number of outdoor challenges. Time is allowed for discussion and reflection, monitoring and evaluation so that participants can process their experiences and internalise their learning. Combining challenging activities with skilled facilitation maximises the learning experience. Outward Bound creates learning opportunities and helps participants to seize these.

Programme overview
Outward Bound offers holistic, sustainable programmes that focus on empowering youth at risk with constructive alternatives. It aims to transform communities through the influence of transformed individuals.
Marginalised youth may find themselves trapped in a perpetuating cycle of unacceptable behaviour that negatively impacts society. Through intervention and reflection, Outward Bound provides the tools to break these cycles and heal the root causes of crime.

 Leadership Courses
These courses focus on experiencing different leadership styles and situations, developing confidence and trust, time management, decision-making and teamwork.

Personal Development Courses
These courses encompass such skills as learning how to learn, confidence, developing strengths, understanding others, self-awareness, self-management and interpersonal relations.

Youth and Schools Programme
The outcomes-based outdoor training education programmes are designed to meet the contemporary needs of young people and the requirements of the curriculum. A specialist education advisor is available to design programmes that meet schools' differing requirements.

Adult Challenge Programmes
A variety of Adult Challenge programmes focus on self-development and relationship development. They provide an opportunity to participate in exciting and challenging outdoor activities aimed at discovering true potential, facing fears and defying limits!

Challenge by Choice Campaign
This campaign was launched on Youth Day 2008 to draw attention to and to address the issues facing young people today. Outward Bound is committed to effecting positive change and facilitating interventions that will reduce crime, as well as engender respect for self, community and environment. Some of the components of this campaign include the following:
Father and Son Programme: This intervention tackles the disintegration of the family structure and the lack of role models and mentors by improving communication and building trust through outdoor activities. Participants can rebuild relationships based on integrity and honesty, and bond through shared experiences.
Pride of Africa Nationbuilding Programme: This community service based programme endeavours to redefine false perceptions and prejudice through developing mutual trust and respect. Participants are drawn from different socio-economic backgrounds and are encouraged to integrate, manage diversity and handle change.
Lion Heart Corporate Mentorship Initiative: Breaking with traditional training techniques, team-building initiatives are paired with community and social responsibility. Employees partner with youth at risk while participating in adventure initiatives. The youth have the opportunity of interacting with mentors and role models whilst observing the accomplishment of anticipated outcomes. The aim is to develop continuity with youth at risk through evaluation and intervention.


This feature:  Child & Youth Care Work, South Africa.