Ways to Give / The Maddie Project

the Maddie Project

Outward Bound Canada has a proven track record of working with Canadians from all walks of life to implement innovative and bold solutions that encourage participants to overcome obstacles and reconnect with themselves and others and the world around them. OBC’s programs tap into the power of the natural world as a place of education, healing and empowerment. As such, OBC is well-positioned to play a key role in helping youth develop self-awareness and build their confidence.

As a third-generation participant in Outward Bound’s programs, Madeline Grace German Coulter had first-hand experience of the power of nature. Her family’s long history of participation and involvement with OBC was the impetus behind a pilot project called Connecting with Courage, an OBC program tailored for teenage girls. Maddie was the sparkle in the room that brought laughter and energy to everyone. When depression ended her life at just 14 years old, Maddie’s family channeled their grief into purpose creating the Maddie Project. Driven by community collaboration and events, the Maddie Project has two goals: to raise funds to provide uninhibited access to support for youth and their families through improved facilities and programs, and to increase awareness through conversations about youth depression and mental health concerns.

The Connecting with Courage program model uses a strength-based curriculum to support the development of wellbeing and resilience. The uniqueness of the program comes in the fact that it combines activities focused on self-expression and awareness with more traditional outdoor adventure elements, and provides instructors who serve as powerful role models who lead by example in standing in their confidence and owning their unique voices.

The Connecting with Courage program has a long history of success with Outward Bound schools throughout North America including in Canada. With the rise in mental health issues amongst adolescents, and the linkages that have been identified between time spent in nature and positive mental health, OBC and the Maddie Project are excited to continue this collaboration. The 2021 course will be a seven-day backpacking journey in the backcountry of British Columbia, run in the late summer (August 23-29, 2021). As with any OBC course, the expected outcomes for participants are an improved sense of resiliency, greater leadership skills and social connectedness and a stronger connection with nature. In addition, this course will have an added focus on developing confidence and helping youth find their voice. To learn more about this course or to register please click here.

Outward Bound Canada is proud to partner with the Maddie Project as we work together to raise funds to provide access to as many youth as possible and offer programs that support them in developing their confidence and helping them find their “voice” at a critical stage of their development when they become overwhelmed with a host of cultural, social, physical and psychological pressures. To learn more about the Maddie Project or to make a donation please visit: https://themaddieproject.ca/about-us-1

“When her dad texted me that he had picked her up and she seemed happy (but filthy), I was flooded with relief…Then I got a text from her that said ‘I’m out of the woods! And I made 7 new BFFs.’ Then I downright ugly cried…Life is challenging for this generation in ways we as parents can’t begin to comprehend. This trip gave those girls the opportunity to shift their connection from infinite virtual influences and pressures to connecting with all that’s within them and right in front of them. I am enormously grateful towards the Maddie Project for funding this expedition. It has already had a positive impact on my child, and will continue to do so in amazing ways we have yet to see.”

-Parent of a 2019 Connecting with Courage pilot project participant

Testimonial Isabelle's Summer Canoeing Adventure
Testimonial The Impact on my son
Testimonial I'm part of nature
Testimonial Our School Group Experience
Testimonial Life Compass in the Rockies
Testimonial An Adventure close to home
Backpack-Icon-graphic 2,269 2019 Participants
Compass-Icon-graphic 13,175 2019 Course Days
Fire-Icon-graphic 44% Of Students Funded
Tent-Icon-graphic 179 2019 Programs

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