About Us

The Outward Bound Trust is an educational charity that uses the outdoors to help develop young people from all walks of life. Through the generosity of our donors, we are able to run adventurous and challenging outdoor learning courses that equip young people with valuable skills for education, work and life. We help them become more confident, more effective and more capable at school, college and in the workplace.

We also work with organisations from across the UK to deliver behavioural development programmes for their  apprentices, graduates and early careers talent.

All of our courses inspire and motivate young people and take place in the natural environment, away from distractions or modern amenities. Participants learn a deep appreciation of the balance between risk, reward and responsibility and leave our courses with transferrable, essential life skills, including:

  • Setting and achieving goals
  • Listening and communicating effectively
  • Facing a challenge with determination 
  • Cooperation and collaboration 
  • Maintaining a positive outlook, even when things get tough
  • Effective leadership skills.

These skills have been shown to have a profound impact on the future success of individuals in both education and employment, and on their overall wellbeing.

We bring out the best in people, irrespective of their backgrounds, from school children through to senior managers. We teach them that they can achieve whatever they set out to do.

Click here for more information about our courses.

Generations of success

To date over a million people have benefited from the Outward Bound experience. So we’ve encouraged some of them to share their memories online. This online library is a place where past participants can share their stories, reconnect with former 'Outward Bounders' and inspire future adventurers.


The Trust was founded in 1941 by Lawrence Holt and Kurt Hahn as a school for merchant seamen. After the war, The Trust developed an educational programme that promoted the principles of independence and self-awareness through outdoor learning experiences.

… and now

Today, we are the UK's leading provider of bursary-assisted outdoor learning. In 2016 we worked with 27,783 young people. 

In the future we will give more young people from all walks of life the chance to show what they’re capable of achieving with the right support, challenge and encouragement.

Above all, our goal is to foster a sense that anything is possible, where participants leave with renewed optimism, raised aspirations and improved self-esteem.