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A world of difference

Outward Bound Canada’s programs are different from summer camps. With more than 35 Outward Bound schools around the world, our unique methodology is based on decades of experience, and our commitment to innovation and excellence in youth development is recognized worldwide.

What sets us apart:

1. Diverse activities in epic locations: We offer a variety of programs in Canada’s most beautiful landscapes, tailored to age groups, interests and goals to ensure each participant’s experience is relevant and impactful.

2. Holistic learning: Our programs combine adventure, experiential education, and reflection to create a holistic learning journey that goes far beyond the traditional classroom setting.

3. Expert instructors: Our instructors are not only skilled outdoor leaders, but also experienced educators who create inclusive and transformative spaces for personal growth.

4. Unique methodology: We work with a proven pedagogical approach that challenges participants to step out of their comfort zone and encourages deep learning and self-discovery.

5. We’re actually a school – Yes, we even have a principal! This is how we can offer high school credit courses. Outward Bound Canada is also well-known for its research – our pre- and post-course surveys and expert analysis allow us to assess the impact our programs have on youth. 

Key ways our courses stand out from camp

1. Gradual transfer of leadership: Instructors inform and inspire participants throughout the course. However, as the course progresses, responsibility for tasks shifts from the instructors to the participants, allowing the group’s technical skills and decision-making ability to grow and flourish.

2. Solo experience: The solo experience, also known as “solo”, is designed to give participants some time to themselves, away from the group, to relax, reflect and recharge. The solo provides a change of pace and varies in length depending on the duration of the course. On longer courses, each participant has the opportunity to set up their own campsite, take care of their own physical and mental needs and enjoy their independence. They are never more than a whistle-blow away from the instructors, who check on them regularly.

The solo is often described as the most transformative part of the experience. It gives participants the opportunity to reflect on their experiences on the expedition so far, gain important insights about themselves and leave behind anything that won’t be useful to them in the future.

3. Hands-on service projects: OBC partners with other youth programs, communities and organizations to provide reciprocal programs with service-learning environmental projects during the expeditions. By working on these projects, participants have the opportunity to demonstrate leadership skills, engage in civic activities, and learn about and discuss critical issues such as climate change and the biodiversity crisis – which not only motivates them to take on leadership roles in their communities, but also gives them a perspective on careers in the environmental field.

Projects participants have worked on include beach cleanups to monitor microplastics and collecting data on old-growth forests during an expedition.

Our participants report:

Backpack-Icon-graphic 70% Increased resiliency
Compass-Icon-graphic 77% Increased leadership
Fire-Icon-graphic 70% Increased compassion
Tent-Icon-graphic 90% Want to do another Outward Bound course