ERIC Number: ED454027
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2000-Jan
Reference Count: N/A
Benefits and Components of an Inclusive Adventure Program for Families with Children Who Have a Disability.
Scholl, Kathleen; McAvoy, Leo; Smith, John
A nonprofit outdoor adventure organization and a nonprofit advocacy organization for persons with disabilities and their families collaborated to develop a comprehensive, inclusive, outdoor recreation program for families. Ten Minnesota families having one or more children with a disability participated in Project FIT (Families Integrating Together) over an 8-month period. Program activities included 20 hours of outdoor skills training and trip planning, a family outdoor adventure trip of 3-6 days duration, and opportunities for families to share common interests and mutual support. Each family integrated into a regularly scheduled canoeing or camping trip in Minnesota or Wyoming. Family interviews and a focus group revealed that families benefitted from program participation by increases in their knowledge and confidence as a family unit. Pretrip training sessions helped to decrease parents' fears about camping, and most families came home from the extended trip with increased confidence about planning family outings and managing their child in the outdoors. Families identified five program elements that contributed to successful whole-family participation: attention to safety, appropriate but real challenge, opportunities for socialization among all family members, balance of group and individual activities, and qualified staff to provide technical and personal support. Challenges for program staff included getting families to enroll, designing appropriate training sessions, and helping families determine their support needs in a strange environment. (Contains 20 references.) (SV)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: National Inst. on Disability and Rehabilitation Research (ED/OSERS), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Minnesota