Project Adventure and Schooner Adventure Receive Cape Ann Community Foundation Grant
Two Local Non-Profit Organizations Founded with Goals of Building Sustainable Learning Communities Come Together with the Cape Ann Community Foundation Grant GLOUCESTER, Mass., June 18, 2018 – Project Adventure out of Beverly, MA and the Schooner Adventure out of Gloucester, MA have been developing quality youth programming, founded in providing transferable leadership skills to youth that will help build their neighborhoods and learning communities. With this grant, they plan to combine their resources and create a program that is both on land and sea and support the current and future Cape Ann workforce by instilling real-world leadership skills in the youth of the local area. Both of these organizations believe that change is necessary for growth to take place and that change also comes from a leader who has an inspiring vision of the future, motivates people to act on that vision, and coaches them so there is not just one leader, but a group of leaders intent on achieving that vision. Project Adventure and the Schooner Adventure plan to create a leadership program that encourages middle and high school aged students to step out of their comfort zones and stretch into a place where they become the role model and make a difference in their communities. “We are excited to be part of this collaborative effort with Project Adventure,” stated the Executive Director at Schooner Adventure, Stefan Edick. “I believe that by sharing platforms and resources we can better benefit the community. Like Project Adventure, we offer a place for learning where young people find the strength they had not expected.” By providing an experience that takes students on land and sea, they will apply their skills to each situation and come to understand the different roles they can play as a member of a group. Richard Ross, the Executive Director at Project Adventure, believes that “it is our goal to provide students with an experience that allows them to be a leader at any level and to realize that providing leadership is not forcing a group to follow orders, but to create an environment of shared responsibility. We have been working with the Schooner Adventure staff to think of innovative ways to collaborate on projects that would allow youth to take part in a new experience, and this grant will help us start what we had envisioned.” Pictured above from left to right:Bruce Feldman, Norie Mozzone, Stefan Edick, Ruth Pino, Richard Ross, Ashley Corcoran, Pat Slade
Social and Emotional Learning Symposium
Bringing Leaders in SEL Together
Thank You, Donors!
30 April 2018 This past Saturday, we celebrated our donors by hosting a day on the course so they could have a first-hand experience of the positive change we hope to bring to schools, youth-serving organizations, and neighborhoods in the area. The days leading up to Saturday were cold, rainy, and nothing that resembled spring, but Mother Nature must have known that we were having visitors on Moraine Farm because she cleared the skies and brought out the sun. Thanks to our trainers, Greg Urban, Camille Oosterman, Austin Paulson, and MB Buckner, our donors, friends, and family all had a wonderful time balancing on the Catwalk, climbing to new heights and smashing personal records on the Vertical Playpen, and flying across our field on the Zip Line. Whether our donors climbed or remained firmly on the ground as the photographer, their smiles could be seen from the time they stepped foot on our course until well after they left. We truly enjoy inviting folks to experience what we get to see every day. The students and adults walk away from our time together with a new perspective on their work and role in their communities and we want to share that with everyone who helps make it all happen. Thank you to all of our donors who choose to share our work with their communities. We know that real change comes from experience, and we can be that experience with your help.
How Do You Reduce Stress?
Sometimes you don’t realize that your shoulders have crept up to your ears, or how tight your jaw is clenched until you make it a point to stop. Everything. We all handle stress in different ways, so the staff at Project Adventure shared how they reduce stress to remind us that it’s important to take a moment out of each day for yourself. Take a deep breath or two. Remove myself from the situation by taking a short walk.Susan Rock climbing, skiing, running (eww), hiking, biking, paddling and other such activities are tools I will often use as ‘active meditators’ to help chill out. Then there's the ‘everything but’ physical activity which often includes staying home, sleeping in with no alarm, eating lots of food, and catching up on all the stupid shows I never watch. And lastly, social time. I am thankful to have such a tightly woven social network, with friends that know me well enough to identify when I might need help relaxing. These days of reprise will often look similar to the category listed above, but with more mental activity. Usually, board games, lawn games, short and long talks will ease me into a broader peace of mind.Dillon Walking, exercise, weeding, skiing, getting away for the weekend.Heather Yawn. Yawning is a proven relaxation technique, and it's contagious, the key is to stay in yawn for several minutes, at least two. The tricky part is the stigma around mouth wide open in public. Rock Balancing, I did some rock balancing AKA ‘rock art’ the other day and an hour and a half went by, and I had no idea.Mark I grin and bear it and hope tomorrow is better. Now that I think of it, talking with people that I love definitely helps.Debbie My stress relievers are turning off radios, and TVs computers and tuning into the world surrounding me. Being aware of the sounds and rhythms of the world. Also, I love yoga and any physical activity for reducing stress.Suzanne My best stress reliever is my dog and an evening walk. As we all know, the love that is expressed by our pets when we walk in the door at the end of the day is never ending and without judgment. Coupling that warm welcome with a walk through the neighborhood separates my work life from my personal life. The other aspect of this that is important is that we (my dog and I) often see our friends during the walk. These encounters are short, but import interactions that reinforce the separation between work and home and help to bring a personal connection to my day. Being sure to have this separation between work and home is also important for me to keep my stress levels lower. While each aspect of life can have its stresses, being able to take a break from each part at different times throughout the day is essential and necessary to manage my stress levels. Part of this is being sure to disconnect from my work communications during my time and vice versa when I’m at work. Granted there are exceptions to this rule, but keeping these exceptions to a minimum and a manageable number is VERY important. Finally, being sure to have time for personal recreation is very important. Being a recreation professional, I understand that one definition of the word recreation is 'to create a new' and that it is crucial for me to assure I have time for recreational activities so that I can start fresh when I return to work or other aspects of my life. The recreational activities do not necessarily need to be physical but need to be of sufficient intensity to require complete concentration or separation from other thoughts. This recreational time provides the opportunity for me to 'cleanse the mind' and create a new view on any upcoming tasks.Wayne Most of what we do to relieve stress is to make a connection. We connect with loved ones through laughter, we connect with nature on a walk with our dog, or we connect with ourselves by unplugging from all devices. Whatever that connection might be, it’s a healthy release that allows our bodies to recover from the day. As for me, I love markers and pens in every color, and I also like to challenge my brain to create new things. My stress reducer is to combine the two: write brightly colored haikus and maybe share them. What will you do today?
Creating Differentiated Learning Environments
Project Adventure Leads Their First Women’s Specific Advanced Skills and Standards Workshop BEVERLY, Mass., March 19, 2018 Each year, the trainers at Project Adventure sit down and discuss the topics of workshops to offer and what content is relevant in our industry. It was last year that the idea of having a women’s specific technical training landed on the table. Some staff got on board believing that a women’s specific option would enhance our appeal. However, there was some speculation that if we offered it, we would be going against our inclusive model of learning. After much discussion, the result was a resounding, YES! This opportunity was not created to limit learning but instead, offer a differentiated learning environment while delivering the same content as our current Advanced Skills and Standards. Laura MacDonald and Camille Oosterman, two of our incredible trainers, recently reflected on their time spent in these environments. From Laura:At various times over the last 20 years, I have found myself by accident or design in single-sex learning environments. The one that stands out the most was 12 of us women for a two-day training. Trust in the group was built quickly and before long, we shared feelings of motivation, vulnerability, and apprehension. The empathy and support offered were immediate and overwhelming. Soon participants were doing things like yelling loudly before climbing the ladder, and everyone was gathering around to watch and encourage. There were laughter and tears, frustration and triumph. I noticed I was more able to push my limits in the community that we built. I botched many of the new skills I tried, but that was less important than sharing what I was learning with my peers. When I returned to my course, I had a new confidence and proficiency. It has been 16 years since that workshop, and we are all still connected. It is an experience I won’t ever forget. From Camille:It wasn’t until I started my internship at Project Adventure that I recognized the different energies and styles of the women I was working with. Some of them were, and still are, charismatic and extroverted, but far more of them brought a different sort of presence to their groups that resonated with me more than the other groups I had experienced. I have had the privilege to work with many incredible women in this industry, but I have always had to seek them out. So much of our industry has been dominated by the male voice—in our publications, in our role-models, in our history—that it has been challenging, but not impossible, to find female role-models. I have now been involved in several technical trainings lead by women, and it has helped me to be more confident in my own technical abilities. Sure, being proficient in any field is possible with enough diligence and confidence, regardless of who you are, but it is so much more inspiring to be able to recognize yourself in your leaders. Please join us April 30 - May 3 for our women’s specific Advanced Skills and Standards workshop.