Special Initiatives


Ever heard of Nature Deficit Disorder?

According to author and researcher Richard Louv, Nature Deficit Disorder is a metaphor for how little time young people, particularly teens, are spending out of doors. The Child Mind Institute reports this is primarily due to technology. The average American child is said to spend 4 to 7 minutes a day in unstructured play outdoors, and more than 7 hours a day in front of a screen.

Introducing the Outdoor Leadership Program!

Avid hikers and outdoor enthusiasts Don and Sue Gaines provided the lead financial support to launch our new Outdoor Leadership Program at the Boys & Girls Clubs of South Puget Sound in the spring of 2019. The spring session was held at the Schatz Branch, and the second summer session was conducted at the Milgard Family Eastside Branch. Designed for teens, the purpose of this new program is to engage youth in healthy lifestyles, education, and exposure to the natural environment and its benefits. Through a variety of adventure activities youth develop technical and teambuilding skills, foster a strong sense of environment stewardship, and learn about careers and professions in the Outdoor Education field. Mid way through program, participants enjoy an experience locally, i.e. Pt Defiance, other local hike. Perhaps most exciting of all is that Club teens participate in peak experiences (field trips) to Mt. Rainier. We are grateful to Korum for Kids Foundation and Union Pacific Foundation for also supporting this initiative.

Program Timeline SAMPLE:

2 Program Sessions: 4-6 Weeks

Six week sessions. April 29-June 7 (Session 1)

  • Peak week June 3-7 2 days a week at 45 min sessions
  • 10 lessons (lesson 5 trip)

Mini Summer Session- July 15-Aug 9th

  • Peak week July 29-Aug 3 2 days a week 90 min sessions
  • 6 lesson (lesson 4 trip)