Recre8 is our signature three-month adventure therapy program involving a ten-day therapeutic expedition and providing a minimum of 150 hours of therapeutic support for each young person. Recre8 was designed to reach vulnerable young people who are in desperate need of support but won’t engage with conventional mental health services. Our program takes a fundamentally different approach to how young people access mental health support, by creating an intensive and immersive therapeutic experience outdoors in nature, facilitated by our team of mental health professionals and outdoor adventure specialists.
My relationship with nature has been largely impacted by Recre8. Before the expedition, I largely took my surroundings for granted and didn’t take opportunities to be thankful for the AMAZING place we call home. I’ve learnt how to come back to centre using nature, even if that is just standing outside and waiting for my feelings to pass.Recre8 participant
Through this program we are able to engage young people who otherwise would not access help and it is often the start of a longer therapeutic relationship with us. Young people participate in Recre8 because of the unique opportunity to take a break from their dysfunctional environments and have an adventure in nature. What they don’t anticipate is the transformative experience that comes from receiving intensive and continuous mental health support throughout the journey.
Our programs provide an unmatched opportunity to form long-lasting therapeutic alliances with supportive and skilled clinicians who share the journey with them. The expedition is often the only way young people will engage with therapy, because it presents as an adventure and a fun challenge in nature, radically different to their past experiences in clinical counselling settings. We use the expedition to attract young people who aren’t receptive to conventional services and we find that they stay with us for long after the expedition. After the expedition, they can continue to receive support for as long as needed through a tailored combination of group and individual sessions.
During the expedition, participants learn new positive mental health strategies and coping mechanisms, and begin to implement them to process their trauma and overcome the challenges they face at different transitional points in their life. This program provides young people with innovative and responsive mental health support that fundamentally changes their life trajectory, redirecting them towards positive future pathways. As they experience the satisfaction and reward of being supported to overcome physical challenges on the expedition, they begin to develop the confidence and ability to overcome challenges in other areas of their life too.
A significant point of difference from other adventure camps is our investment in qualified mental health clinicians. Their expertise is applied in the relaxed setting of nature to provide an unmatched opportunity to form long-lasting therapeutic alliances. After the expeditions many young people who wouldn’t otherwise wouldn’t seek help often go on to have long-term individual therapeutic support with Human Nature. The expeditions provide a safe introduction to therapy that then continues for as long as each young person needs.
The five key stages of the Recre8 program
- Clinical assessment and intake – after an extensive clinical assessment and intake process, our team begin to engage with participants and their families to start the process of forming meaningful therapeutic relationships.
- Overnight Preparation Camp – Young people attend an overnight preparation camp to further assess their capacity and commitment to the program. This also serves as a gentle introduction to being in an outdoor environment and developing the skills required for the extended expedition
- Multi-day Therapeutic Expedition – During the expedition, participants develop resilience and confidence as they carry all their own gear and overcome the physical challenges during the hike. Throughout this entire journey, each participant has 24/7 access to our team of psychologists, social workers, and therapeutic mentors who provide mental health support whenever it’s needed.
- Follow-up Support – After the expedition, we provide continued opportunities to engage with us through group and individual mental health sessions. Having formed strong ties during the expedition, participants are better positioned to engage in long-term therapeutic support with our team.
- Reunion Camp – At a Reunion Camp, participants reflect on their experience with their peers and begin to integrate new learnings into their daily lives. Taking place several weeks after the expedition, the reunion camp provides a space for participants to come back together and identify new challenges and barriers they’ve experienced as they’ve returned back home