Testimonials – Australian Outward Bound Development Fund

Decision maker feedback on AOBDF community courses:

“Every aspect of the Outward Bound Program including its strategic design, safety measures and objectives exceeded our expectations. Not to mention the staff, level of professionalism and excellent coordination and facilitation that are truly commendable.”

Wesley Mission Victoria 


“Outward Bound helps young people explore their potential and discover they are capable of surviving on their own. They return with better leadership and teamwork skills, but also more independent and resilient. As a teacher it is often surprising which students come to the fore and rise to the challenge. The students develop a great sense of achievement completing the course.”

Harden District Education Foundation


“The Outward Bound program enhances self-esteem, sense of belonging, initiative, team work and helps students to lift their aspirational goals as they are challenged to achieve more than they think they can. All of these are objectives of The Smith Family that ensure our young people stay connected to school and desire to complete their education with dreams and aspirational goals for their future. 

The collective impact of Outward Bound and The Smith Family working together is a powerful formula and clearly achieving great outcomes for the students participating.”

The Smith Family

“The Trust Company has financially supported the National Aspiring Leader’s Summit operated by Outward Bound and is very pleased with the outcomes achieved. The National Aspiring Leaders Summit is a program for young people aged 15-18 years. It was developed with the intent to strengthen communities by producing young leaders who are passionate, effective and values driven, and capable of implementing positive change in their community.

Each annual program has displayed a unique group of individuals, with great hopes and dreams of a more equitable and compassionate society. The results confirm the large positive impact that the intense experience a week long program can have on a group of diverse young people. The delegates overwhelming report the Summit to be a life changing experience, and the value of this alone cannot be underestimated. Unique to this program is the process of sending away the young people with a project or mission. The simple act of engaging these young people in their communities, communicating with local councils, school leadership teams, not for profit organisations and the like regarding issues that matter to them, is the first step in producing a culture of grass-roots leadership within these communities.”

The Trust Company

“Mirabel was established in Victoria in 1998 and extended into New South Wales in 2003. It is the only organisation in Australia specifically addressing the needs of children who have been orphaned or abandoned due to parental drug use. Mirabel supports children aged 0-17 years and works at restoring a child’s sense of self-worth, belonging and hope for the future in order for them to reach their full potential as young adults. Mirabel believes that investing in children is the most compassionate and economic investment we can make. Whether it is done financially, emotionally, or by lessening the stigma and feelings of isolation, both the community and these children will reap the rewards.

Mirabel partnered with Outward Bound to deliver a nine day wilderness based journey delivered in the Victorian Snowy Mountains. During the program participants undertook a range of adventurous activities including abseiling, expeditioning, rafting, map reading, preparing and cooking food over a camp fire, setting up camp and planning daily routines for themselves and the group. These activities were conducted by Outward Bound’s experienced instructors who also guided the participants through a parallel journey of personal development helping them identify their personal values, harness their strengths and develop their resilience.

It is the view of the Mirabel Foundation that Outward Bound Australia provide unique experiences that strengthen a child’s resilience and fosters self-belief and would readily support any application they make for funding that will allow more young people to access this program.”

Mirabel Foundation

Particpant feedback on AOBDF community courses:

“Outward Bound for me was a massive opportunity for growth and a life changing experience.  Having recently quit smoking for the final time and after losing my father to complications after surgery for lung cancer, I went into the program with a desire to embed my new health goals.  I found on the course that not only was I presented with opportunities to challenge myself in regards to my physical capacities, but that I was also challenged (and supported) mentally and emotionally.  The experience of abseiling was one that was thoroughly rewarding, with the support of my crew allowing me to push through my fears.  The LegoLand experience was one that will remain close to my heart and I was honoured to be afforded the opportunity to sit and reflect on the rich history of the Ngunnawal land.  The service was a rewarding experience to give back to a land that I have taken for granted and I remain immensely grateful for the experience as a whole.”

Accompanying Staff – 2019 Karralika Program Adventure proudly supported by Australian Outward Bound Development Fund


“I feel incredibly fortunate to have participated in this course. The week is well constructed and thought through (avoiding the standard team building activities that many of us would be familiar with). It is a formula that works by integrating theory with practice. It is challenging and demanding on a variety of levels to address the participant’s diverse backgrounds and the experiences they already bring. The Outward Bound team is professional, knowledgeable and experienced. They strike the right balance between pushing the participants to take a risk whilst maintaining a high level of health and safety practices”.

Georgina Course, The Smith Family

“Amazing. One of the best and most challenging things I’ve done. To learn you are so amazing and Outward Bound can help you realise this. It’s something that will change your life forever and you will never forget. I now know I can achieve greatness and I know/hope that all my goals I’ve been striving for will be reachable.”

Participant – 2015 National Aspiring Leaders Summit

“Firstly, the experience I had at the hands of your people was one of the most valuable I’ve had in terms of allowing me to see how I behave and how I come across to others. I think that the reason that it was so powerful for me was because I was open to the self-reflection that the Outward Bounders allowed to happen carefully and progressively throughout the week. I think that the insight allowed by the honesty and dialogue fostered has allowed to move beyond some unhelpful behaviours that I was carrying. The self- development aspect of the course was excellent for me”.

Jolyon Burford, Foundation for Young Australians