HOW IT BEGAN:
In Spring 2012 I had just returned from traveling around South America and my path lead me to begin working as a Wilderness Adventure therapy guide. I quickly learned about the concept of Self-Efficacy and it's importance to students with behavioral or social issues in the process of seeking change.
Self-efficacy is something that Psychologist Albert Bandura defined as our belief in our ability to succeed in specific situations. This simple concept became integral to every aspect of my job working with troubled youth. While seemingly intuitive, the idea that we could promote success in life by helping the achievement of small things such as, getting to the top of a rock wall seemed pretty incredible to me. What's more, it seemed to work! In a couple short months I could actively see students gain confidence and build self-efficacy for specific tasks, the results in the students general demeanor, confidence, leadership, increased social skills and general happiness.
I have become more and more fascinated by the application of information in outdoor adventure and travel programs with adolescents and young adults. The truth is, that trying new things and accomplishing small tasks in life naturally leads to building self-efficacy, which translates to belief in one's abilities, and eventually increases self confidence, leadership ability etc. While all outdoor adventure programs, travel education and wilderness therapy programs have elements of this intrinsically incorporated, becoming intentional in the promotion of self-efficacy can lead to that much more.
The academic concepts of self-efficacy for positive change in all of us are easily applicable to all our lives and especially to teaching adolescents and young adults to become the best versions of themselves. While there are many programs which help students realize these goals I found myself as an educator struggling to find resources for facilitation of outdoor adventure programs and travel adventure programs. As I became more creative and interested in being more intentional with my time as a guide, I began a process of research and discovered many other guides were hungry for more information. This website is meant to be a resource for outdoor educators, guides, companies, parents, teachers or just people interested in the concepts.