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Adventure-Based Troubled Teen Therapy

adventure-based therapy for troubled teens

The Caribbean Mountain program provides troubled teens with a program of adventure and physical activities, indoors and outdoors. Outdoors, we go camping, backpacking, zip lining, kayaking, swimming, hiking, and spelunking (cave exploration). We find that teens are more open to talking while enjoying the adventure, so we use those times to instill positive thinking and develop better communication skills to improve their ability to work cooperatively with others.  

Teens also take part in mission trips during their stay here. We go to local schools, baseball camps, build houses, and more!

Although much of what we do happens outside, due to weather, there are times we stay inside as well. However, inside does not mean that the program stops. It is not what we do that matters; our staff and mentors take the time to do things with our students that let them know they are important to us and that we care about them. We seek every possible way to build relationships with our students. Along the way, we build trust and earn the right to speak truth into their lives, inviting them to change and become their best versions.

Why Adventure Therapy?

ADVENTURE-BASED TROUBLED TEEN THERAPYAdventure therapy is experiential therapy that uses challenging adventure activities to aid the therapeutic healing process. Adventure therapy helps promote healthy identity development.  

At the Caribbean Mountain Academy adventure therapy program, students can engage in various new activities and experiences during their stay. Adventure therapy activities at Caribbean Mountain are where teens learn to listen, keep themselves safe, learn emotional regulation skills, and push themselves to overcome challenging tasks. The challenges students face through our adventure programming are designed to forge an identity, build character, and improve self-esteem. Students do not just participate in the activity; they learn how to do it themselves. This is called experiential learning.  

Our trained staff facilitates adventure themselves. The same guides that live with students all week, building rapport and making connections, can instruct students during their adventure activities.

In our adventure therapy program, we see several benefits:

  • Identity development
  • Trauma resilience
  • Learning to self-advocate for needs
  • A decrease in symptoms of anxiety and depression
  • Increased self-efficacy
  • Improved executive functioning
  • Improved interpersonal skills

Caribbean Mountain Academy focuses on helping teens and their families through difficulties that occur when various emotional, behavioral, cognitive, or developmental issues are present. Research shows that engaging adolescents on a personal level with strategic and intentional adventure activities will aid in developing the tools and skills necessary to engage in living healthily and positively.

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