We have been active with 'Chicago Voyagers' since 2002; they are a non-profit organization that helps guide youths on their journey by providing outdoor, environmental activities that offer positive, developmental experiences to help groups change the lives of at risk youth.
We help teach them: interpersonal relationships, responsibility, self-empowerment, achievement, values, and service to the community. All while having fun, improving health and showing them the alternatives to the couch, gangs and violence.
Each youth has potential; and they only need guidance and support to grow into successful, healthy adults.
Half and full day cycling, canoeing, skiing and team building exercises; along with overnight and weekend camping and canoe trips are mixed with positive character development programs and team building exercises and games.
All while having fun!
"The program provides a forum for the development of teamwork. It also gives the youth a chance to learn more about nature." - Steve Kim, East Village Youth
"Chicago Voyagers helps our youth in a tremendous way. Outings such as this encourage our youth to step out of their comfort zone, try something new, appreciate nature, appreciate what they have and interact with other youth in a healthy and encouraging manner." - Jorge de Leon, Addison Trail High School CIMA program
"You guys are totally awesome! What a selfless act! Thank you for giving the kids the BEST outing of the year. They are still talking about it. Great job and sincerely, THANK YOU." - Chad, Family and Youth Services Bureau
"We would like to thank you again for your hard work and dedication in working with at-risk youth. We look forward to working with you again in the future." - Family and Youth Services Bureau youth worker
To learn more about Chicago Voyagers and Trips for Kids visit their website by clicking on the logo to the right.
Empowering at-risk youth through outdoor experiential adventures that foster healthy relationships and responsible behavior.
We serve at-risk youths aged 12 to 18 years old.
WHAT WE BELIEVE
We believe in the potential of each youth and that they only need guidance and support to grow into successful, healthy adults. We believe all youth have the right to experience outdoor activities and none should have nature deficit disorder.
The out-of-doors is the perfect setting to work with youth. It provides many natural lessons while allowing the youth to have fun and improve their physical health. The outdoors exposes youth to the world around them. It gets kids off the couch and combats the national crises in obesity. It gives kids an alternative to gangs and combats the national crises in youth violence.
Safety instruction before going on the water.
Sometimes we do play games.
The kids carry their own canoes.
Basic Canoe Skills
Learning to steer.
50+ kids today, so 3 to a canoe.
The rules of the game first!
Team Building Exercises
Self esteem building.
High Ropes Course
Building confidence 30' up in the air.
Building self esteem.
The school chaperones get to work too.
Voyage to the Stars Gala
An amazing turnout of donors!
Omar explains the benefits he has gained from Voyagers programs.
Bernie rolls out the new 'Journey' program.
Two ropes, and two back-up belayer's make for safety.
Over the edge!
Everything is checked, re-checked and checked again.
Encouragement from below helps the kids to achieve.
Two people on the rope make sure it is safe.
We made it to the top.
Fund raising canoe trip
Overnight ski trip and team building
Initial briefing on arrival
Team building drill
Bunking down for the night
Basic canoeing skills training
Taking a break from basic canoeing skills.
We also practiced rescues.
It did not take too long to dry out!
Team building exercises
We are all connected.
Everyone needs to be in a circle.
The two teams together.
Canoeing at Busse Woods
We also take time to collect garbage.
As well as practicing canoeing skills.
Everyone wears a life jacket.
Biking at Busse
The bridge across Golf Road.
We discussed the impact of garbage on the environment during the mid-ride break.
Staying single file and demonstrating respect for other users is important.
Mountain biking at Palos
Technical problems always solved!
Water breaks are important.
We always keep to the trails.
Team building day
Now how do we get one over, one under and the rest through the middle?
That's one way over!
And now thorugh the middle.
Briefing before the rescue drill.
A sunny smile on a sunny day!
Instruction from a volunteer.
Cross Country Skiing
Top of the hill(!)
Taking a breather.
Team building games!
Three to each canoe this trip
Sometimes we have more kids than we have equipment and volunteers for
Making sure everyone stays together.
Minor technical problems don't discouage us!
A well deserved break in the shade.
"What you leave behind is not what is engraved in stone monuments, but what is woven into the lives of others." ~ Pericles 495 - 429BC