In 1997, Zero Ceiling brought groups of marginalized youth from Vancouver’s Downtown East Side to Whistler for snowboarding lessons, free of charge. Zero Ceiling’s founder, Chris Winter, had an idea that young people from just down the highway could have a life-changing experience in nature and adventure. They just needed the opportunity. Those first lessons became The Adventure Sessions.
Since then, we’ve added diverse programs — some of which are still going strong, like Work 2 Live, and others that we outgrew along the way. But these day trips have always been a key part of Zero Ceiling.
This week, the Adventure Sessions come back for summer adventures!
Here’s how we’re making the Adventure Sessions safer
In order to keep the Adventure Sessions safe for our community and for the participants, here are some of the changes we are making:
- We are limiting group sizes to allow for physical distancing.
- We are keeping in close communication with the activity providers to ensure everyone is on the same page with precautions and responsibilities.
- We are setting very clear expectations for everyone coming on how to be safe.
- We are changing up some of the activities we are providing to ones that can be done while social distancing and in masks (hiking, anyone?)
- We hired a part-time Peer Worker to support the groups and help everyone feel comfortable and safe while visiting and adventuring.
If you work with a youth agency and want to be notified of our upcoming openings for your clients and participants, get in touch by emailing Lizi at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Excited to be back
Like everyone else, we had to adapt how we engaged with others and the environment when our province declared a state of emergency in March. As we documented, our programs underwent immediate changes, and our focus became creating stability for our Work 2 Live participants and graduates. We continued providing support remotely, mobilizing all of our resources and leaning on our community for help where we could.
The Adventure Sessions had to be cancelled indefinitely. It was the right decision, and all of our partners agreed.
However, we have missed connecting with youth and our agency partners. We have missed introducing young people to the outdoors or a new sport. We have missed seeing our friends at Whistler Blackcomb and The Adventure Group every week. We have missed engaging with our community volunteers and supporters.
For us, the Adventure Sessions weren’t just a fun day out (although of course that’s a huge part of why we love them). They were also a chance to serve our community in really tangible ways. Suffice it to say, we are pleased to be bringing them back, even if they look a little different than before.
We couldn’t do it without our partners
We are incredible thankful to our partners, who made it possible for the Adventure Sessions to continue.
Also, huge thanks go to our many youth agency partners in Metro Vancouver, the Lower Mainland, and the Sea to Sky Corridor, who make every season better than the last.