Wilderness Weekly 6.18.21

Photo Credit: Primary Therapist Scott Jones

Goannas:  The Goannas this week focused on bonding, supporting one another, and finishing therapy assignments and skills. The group welcomed a new member and they were quickly brought into the culture fully by supporting them through the transition into desert living. Group members gave a lot of effort towards recognizing the good in one another through the ceremonial process of honoring and acknowledging; of being “seen”. They spent a couple hours everyday exploring the local area around their camp discovering meadows and fields that were great for playing games such as hacky sack as well as collecting supplies for their fire sets. The group grew in many ways this week and are looking forward to continuing to grow and learn from each other.

Brumbies: The Brumbies welcomed several new friends this week. Many bonded over the common experience of getting used to living in the desert this week. The students got to know each other up close and personal while bonding under the shade of large Juniper trees. With the newest additions to the group, the Brumbies found themselves re-entering the stages of forming and storming in team development. With this, the group was naturally presented with conflict that emerged yet were able to utilize various conflict-resolutions strategies to work through them as a community. This process brought an overall deeper understanding of each other. This group had a lot of fun playing capture the flag too! They were competitive while also learning to work together as a team to build up a winning strategy. Overall, the group is in good spirits, growing closer, and looking forward do adventures ahead.

Cassowaries: Identity is one of the four core values here at outBACK. As such, it was with great excitement that our group began the week on a high note as they received the official group name of Cassowaries! Students quickly worked to establish a solid group culture that prioritized the values of support and acceptance. The group also hiked well as they acclimated to the warmer summer weather. This incredible group of Cassowaries were able to create space to honor Wild Shooting Star with the Solid Ground token and facilitate a goodbye ceremony. The group finished the week in a strong place uniting and creating stronger bonds.

Lorikeets: It was an exciting week for the Lorikeets. The group spent the days playing games and doing group readings of Anatomy of Peace. The book prompted many discussions about improving interpersonal relationships, especially with parents. The students hiked in the evenings under the summer night stars, as they sang songs and set a great hiking pace throughout the expedition portion of the week. Gatherings were held near sunset, with the group opening up to one another or honoring each other with tokens. The Lorikeets also spent plenty of the warmer days this week enjoying siestas in the shade.

Ulurus: The Ulurus took time to welcome new members this week. They were introduced to the group culture, encouraged to practice new skills, and provided feedback about acclimating to the Utah desert. Elder group members had their parents invited into the field for a parent visit and discuss the growth they have experienced since their start at outBACK. Group members honored each other with tokens and trail names, and utilized problem solving skills to come to group resolutions. The Ulurus participated in evening hikes during the expedition portion of the week and engaged in skills during the day. The Ulurus are ready for another great week!


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