The Youth Adventure Trust was founded in 1992 by two polar explorers, David Hempleman-Adams and Major Richard Mitchell. Their aim was to get vulnerable youngsters outside to fulfill their potential and make a positive difference to their lives.
The charity is based in Swindon and Wiltshire and every year they enrol 80 youngsters on an adventure youth programme that lasts three school years. The Trust tries to catch youngsters at an early age rather than wait until they are already on a path they cannot get away from. They might be at risk of offending, getting involved with drugs, underage sex or the other things that can have a negative influence.
Youngsters might come from low income families, foster care, have alcoholic parents or be young carers. The charity understand their needs and the issues they face and bring hope, confidence and coping strategies as part of the activities they do.
The first step of the programme is an explore day where youngsters are introduced to outdoor activities and, following that, there are three residential camps and days where they take part in activities like walking, camping, sailing, caving and archery.
These activities are designed to not only introduce youngsters to the outdoors but foster skills like team work, responsibility, organisation, communication, self esteem and confidence. It enables them to grow and make the right choices in life.
The charity relies on donations and fund raising as well as volunteers to support the youngsters and the activities they run.
Its a great charity and they have a lot of positive stories as a result. If you wish to find out more then visit the website and get involved.