Frequently Asked Questions

What is Wilderness Therapy?

Wilderness and Adventure Therapy at Enviros includes a wide range of different activities. They are intentionally designed with your’s and the group’s needs in mind, designed to provide you with experiences to build the skills you need in treatment and in life. The reason we often retreat to the wilderness is because it’s possible to focus and reflect in a much more meaningful way than in the familiarity and comfort of the normal, day to day world.

Wilderness trips can be 1-7 days in length, and involve a wide range of activities, including; rock climbing, mountain biking, hiking, backpacking, canoeing (river and lake), cross country skiing, high and low ropes, horseback riding, etc.

Does wilderness therapy work?

Enviros is a member of the Outdoor Behavioural Healthcare Council (OBH). This organization has been researching the effectiveness of wilderness therapy since 1996. Research through the years has demonstrated conclusively that wilderness therapy (as practised by OBH members) is extremely effective for a range of issues related to addiction and mental health treatment. You can read more at https://obhcouncil.com/research/.

Enviros is also engaged in our own research and evaluation projects with Dr’s Lee Gillis and Keith Russell (noted researchers, authors and contributors to the field of wilderness therapy). Using our Shunda Creek program they developed the Adventure Therapy Experience Scale (ATES), designed to help participants, staff and programs understand more deeply the role of wilderness and adventure programming on their treatment and recovery.

Is this boot camp?

Enviros is NOT a “boot camp”. We’re not trying to “break you down” before we can build you up, which is a more common approach in some US states. It is also not about excessive risk taking or being uncomfortable and scared in the wilderness. These are some common myths that negatively impact people’s perceptions of wilderness and adventure therapy.