The Youth Strategy Groups for Braintree and Chelmsford have joined forces to fund places for secondary aged students struggling in mainstream education
Out There Wilderness Academy is a transformational programme for youth ages 13–15 who struggle with their behaviour, mood and schooling. Six weeks of outdoor alternative education followed by eight weeks of one-to-one mentoring help young people get back on track in school, at home, and in the community.
Out There is monitored and evaluated by the University of Essex. Intended outcomes for young people include:
- Increased confidence, self-esteem, and physical and mental well-being
- New skills and accreditation, with access to further education opportunities
- Improved employability
- The ability to engage in positive and constructive behavior, showing greater respect for themselves and their environment
Peter’s success in Out There illustrates how the programme helps troubled youngsters.
Peter, 13, struggled to engage at school and behave appropriately with peers and adults. He had been fostered from a young age and had multiple needs.
When he joined the programme, Peter did not mix well with the group. Any sign of conflict sent him into a withdrawn state.
However, he flourished when he was outdoors. He was more relaxed and responded well to group activities in outdoor settings.
During his time at Chatham Green, adult facilitators came to understand the roots of Peter’s difficulties in a difficult family situation. He seemed to be dealing with constant conflict at home. In response, we set Peter up with mentoring support. Peter’s mentor helped him with manage his emotions, engage appropriately with others, and develop a sense of self-worth.
At the end of the mentoring phase, Peter was noticeably calmer. He was ready to cope with regular school attendance and continue his personal development.
If you are a school teacher or youth worker who knows a candidate from Braintree or Chelmsford who would benefit from participating in Out There, please give the team a call on 0300 123 3073.
The first course starts on 26th April and places are available on a “first come first served” basis. As in previous years, we expect demand to be high, so please act urgently.