Counselor teaching wilderness skills

Wilderness Therapy

The benefits of wilderness therapy while remaining connected to families, support systems, schools, and social environments

 

A New Approach to Wilderness Therapy

The growth and transformation that occurs in the wilderness is often exponentially greater than “talk therapy” can provide alone. However, the key is integrating the changes into the home and community environment. We offer a unique and fresh approach to adventure and wilderness interventions to foster positive change in the moment, then immediately bring those changes back home to sustain progress.

Wilderness adventure rafting trip collage

EQUINOX ADVENTURE EXPERIENCES

Venues and specific activities—to include rock and ice climbing, backpacking, peak ascents, rafting, and mountain biking—are purposefully chosen to cultivate personal responsibility, self-worth, empowerment and connection in relationships.

Counselor leading a pair of teens on a hike during wilderness therapy

Community & Friendships

Through daily groups and milieu programming, our staff provide safe and facilitated opportunities for socializing, fun and urban/wilderness adventure.

 

Teens holding hands during wilderness adventure

Fitness & Nutrition

Our comprehensive treatment model provides individual and group programing that creates awareness while providing opportunities for group cooking, outdoor adventure, and wilderness activities.

Shorter in Length

Our wilderness therapy experiences are purposefully shorter in length and scheduled with a frequency that supports the treatment goals of therapy. Weekend or multi-day programs are designed to address your child’s therapeutic needs and create a balance of fun, healthy challenges, and treatment-specific interventions which allow them to generalize these experiences into "real-life" situations.

Engage the Whole Family

Each family has opportunities for action-based learning and challenging experiences to practice relationship skills, new belief systems, and coping skills.  These complement what is being learned in Individual or Family Therapy and we design an experience that involves everyone.

Keep Families Together

Most wilderness therapy programs are designed to occur over several weeks or months in a remote wilderness environment with little to no interaction with family and local communities. While this approach may be beneficial for some, Equinox believes that lasting results of wilderness therapy are much more likely to occur when youth remain connected with their families, support systems, schools, and social environments.

Personalized for Every Client

This is not "one experience fits all." We recommend interventions at very specific junctures of your child’s treatment and choose the adventure activities or wilderness settings based on their individual needs. Group adventures are incorporated in situations where several clients would benefit from shared experiences with peers.

Bringing the Experience Home

Adventure and experiential programs can become a prime opportunity for families to practice what has been learned outside of the home. They develop effective new skills, habits and responses for successfully navigating day-to-day challenges while empowering them to engage in a way that promotes fun, teamwork, and problem-solving as a family.

Extending the work done

Equinox delivers an advanced level of care for transitioning youth home from their wilderness experience. Creating this level of care extends the valuable work done in wilderness programs and gives parent a new option for sustained results when transitioning youth back to their homes and families.

Learning New Skills

Learning many new skills from the wilderness program allows kids to find a sense of self-confidence, and trust their ability to count on peers and leaders. Families need guidance and support to ensure the significant learning that occurred in the wilderness is brought back to everyday relationships and interactions.

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