With two branches located in Auckland and Christchurch, The Adventures Specialties Trust is passionate about using outdoor adventure programmes to impact the lives of rangatahi and whanau in our local communities. The vision was born over thirty-seven years ago in the garage of founders Lyndsay and Glenda Simpkin, both youth workers and keen adventurers who knew the life-changing power of taking participants into nature. They looked high and low to find a youth agency that shared their vision but when none could be found they did what any Kiwi with a great idea would do - erected a shed!
Fast forward thirty years and AST is now Aotearoa New Zealand’s leading outdoor education and adventure therapy programme provide, with over twenty-five full time staff, numerous industry awards, and over six thousand participants annually.
National funding administrator Libbee Dove commented, “Our mission statement is 'Using Outdoor Adventure to Grow Great Communities.' The mountain bikes used by our Auckland branch were at the end of their life and becoming very expensive to maintain. These bikes play a crucial role for young people participating on our adventure therapy, youth development, and school camps.”
National funding administrator Libbee Dove
“Due to COVID19, the supply of bike parts and new bikes into Aotearoa New Zealand has become increasingly difficult. The requested bikes will be preordered to arrive by the beginning of 2022. Sheppard's Cycles is a wholesaler that can offer the bikes at a wholesale rate far below regular retailers. We have already raised sufficient funds to purchase seven new bikes and will now be able to buy six more.”
“We work in partnership with local community groups and schools providing custom designed adventure programmes that are enjoyed by a wide range of demographics, such as The Journey, a ten day expedition where a group of rangatahi travel from one location to another, covering anywhere from 100 - 200 kms. Often they start and/or finish at a location of historic or cultural significance, providing a real sense of importance about what they have achieved. They do this via bike, foot, and kayak. They sleep in tents, cook their food, and grow in resilience, teamwork, confidence, communication skills, and leadership. The bikes will also be used on our Inspire day programmes aimed specifically at getting young people to become more active. Utilising local sites, participants grow their confidence and desire to stay healthy and strong.”
“The funding that we received towards our Operation Managers salaries will help ensure the smooth running of all of our programmes. They oversee the logistics needed to design, book, and implement over 250 programmes annually, alongside managing our instructor base, a large stock of outdoor equipment and vehicles and carrying out our client liaison. Our Operation Managers are essential to our organisation. By supporting their salary costs we can continue to offer affordable and reduced cost programmes to our clients who will benefit most.”