From left, Cassidy, a teen; Nikki Meacham, youth counselor, and Sondra, Caroline, and Theresa, teens, learn to work as a group through fun activities such as kayaking during a recent trip to the Adirondack Mountains, part of Randolph Children’s Home Adventure Recreation Program.

Excursion to Adirondacks brings teens encouragement

By Ashley Williams
Communications Intern

"You can’t do everything alone,” said Sondra, teen at Chautauqua Group Home. “Sometimes asking is better.”

This is one illustration of what teens learned from a recent expedition to the Adirondack Mountains. The excursion was part of Randolph Children’s Home Adventure Recreation Program.

This was Sondra’s third trip and second during the summer.   Throughout the trip in June, she had the opportunity to help others and show them what she had previously learned from other trips.

The trip gives youth the opportunity to learn to work together with people they may or may not have known. They also participate in activities including hiking, camping, kayaking, mountain biking, canoeing, and wall climbing.

“I got to kayak, camp in a cabin, and help cook,” said Sondra.“I kayaked 7 miles around an island.” 

In addition to outdoor activities, youth participate in daily camp chores, meal preparation and cleanup, journal writing, and Guided Group Interaction or GGI. Teens got to know each other better through GGI around a camp fire. They participated in discussions of behaviors that are holding back an individual or the group. Most importantly, they made commitments to the group’s success.

“Group interaction is key,” said Tony Walters, Admissions Director for New Directions Youth and Family Service. “I am amazed by the process.”

“When you are together as a group, it helps.” said Sondra.

Norms of respect, responsibility, safety, and being goal directed are emphasized throughout the trip, too.

“I definitely learned responsibility, said Sondra. “I had to wake up early every morning to make my own lunch, and we all had to make breakfast and dinner. Besides, we had chores. After kayaking, I had to clean my own boat.”

As part of an enrichment day, youth visited the science-based W!ld Center, Natural History Museum of the Adirondacks.  Its experiences, exhibits, and programs are designed to open new ways to look into the latest discoveries made by natural scientists. 

Youth from Randolph Children’s Home, Global Village, Post Adoption, and Chautauqua Group Home participated in this year’s summer trip. The excursion to the Adirondack mountain region provides success-based experiences to youth who are considered high risk due to individual and family problems. 

The exciting trip to the Adirondack Mountains with New Directions Youth and Family Services educated Sabrina, teen, responsibility. 

Sharde, teen, learned leadership through outdoor activities, like kayaking.

Press Contact

Connie Oswald Stofko
Communications Director
New Directions Youth and Family Services
1455 Kensington Avenue
Buffalo, NY 14215
(716) 834-9413, ext. 203
fax: (716) 834-9416