Stories from the Outward Bound family

Finding Inspiration

We've been collecting stories from the young people we've worked with, the Outward Bound team and our wider family to see what they've been doing and how they've adapted during the COVID-19 crisis. Here we share their stories...

We hope you'll be as inspired by their stories as we are. Taking inspiration and perspective from their words has built our resilience and made us even more determined that Outward Bound must survive this challenging time. If you want to share your story please get in touch.


Josh first came to Outward Bound in 2011 with his school, returned on a 19 day Skills for Life Award in 2017 and in 2018 gave an outstanding speech at an event at Windsor Castle in 2018. Now in 2020 he has just completed his first year at St John’s College, University of Cambridge where he is studying Human, Social and Political Sciences. His plan is to specialise in Politics and International Relations.


In such unprecedented times, our teachers, doctors, nurses, cleaners, supermarket workers, volunteers and many more rose to the occasion, becoming the glue which binds our society together.

Frustrated at my inability to support those who really need it, I decided to help out by setting up my own online student support hub because what we do makes a difference and we have to decide what type of difference we want to make.


My name is Stephanie, I am a former Outward Bound participant and completed the 19 day Skills for Life Award in 2017 when I was 18. As I look back now, I learned more about myself in those 19 days than I had in my entire life.

Lockdown hasn’t been easy, I am a young carer living in Glasgow with my mum who is at risk. We are self-isolating to protect her which means we don’t leave my house. The first few weeks were extremely difficult for me, but I've managed to adapt.


With all the challenges we're currently facing, it's made me really reflect on how I've got to where I am now. I used to see, how can we put this politely - a “difficult teenager”. I was at times very close to be permanently excluded. I did not fit well into the education system and it was the courses with Outward Bound through school that changed my life and made me into the person I am today.

Yousuf. Outward Bound alumni

Yousuf came to Outward Bound in 2017 where he rediscovered the positive effects of spending time in the outdoors. Since then he has gone to on mentor young people expelled from mainstream education and is now working as an accountancy apprentice. This is his story which he shared at an event we held at Ronnie Scott’s Jazz Club in London in September 2018.

Stephanie at home
Eleanor at work
Alex Hill OB
I'm helping Morecambe Bay Foodbank with their COVID-19 response and delivering food to those who need it most. We're making deliveries to people from all walks of life. From those who simply cannot afford food - refugees, the elderly, people without a pay check last month; to those self-isolating for their safety.
Alex, Outward Bound instructor

Rehna. Youth worker and mentor

The outdoors just wasn’t something that we got involved in throughout my childhood. But I had an inspirational role model at my youth club. Having someone from the same background, financial situation, culture, religion etc, encouraging me to enter this whole new world is where I found my passion for the outdoors.

Fast forward nine years and I'm leading our youth and community project, helping develop young leaders and supporting them to use their new skills to act as ambassadors in their communities during COVID-19.

Rachel. Outward Bound Fundraiser

Whilst on furlough from The Outward Bound Trust’s Fundraising Team I have been volunteering for the Maudsley Charity, an incredible organisation who support adults, children and young people working to improve their mental health in Central and South East London.

Faith. Marathon Runner

I’m running the London Marathon for The Outward Bound Trust in October. I am usually a paediatric anaesthesiologist but am currently on the front line of the coronavirus pandemic at the hospital I work at in Seattle, Canada.

Alex. Outward Bound Instructor

I’m an instructor at Outward Bound Ullswater. Outside work, I also volunteer for the Lancaster Area Search and Rescue. As part of that team, I am currently assisting Morecambe Bay Foodbank with their COVID-19 response and delivering food to those who need it most during this time.

Megan. OB Alumni and Marathon Runner

After completing a Skills for Life Award course with Outward Bound in 2016, it left me with a constant curiosity as to how far I can push myself both physically and mentally.

During lockdown, I decided to run the London Marathon for Outward Bound this October. I wanted to use the current circumstances we all find ourselves in as an opportunity to throw myself into something new, whilst giving The Trust a little hand with fundraising.

You can sponsor Megan here

Rehna at Outward Bound Ullswater
Rachel working at home for Maudsley
Faith in hospital pre-COVID 19
Alex at Morecambe Bay Foodbank
Trying something new
Kurt Hahn, Outward Bound Co-Founder