Social Impact Report

Social Impact Report

Our 2017 Social Impact Report

Young people growing up in the UK today face multiple barriers to living healthy, happy and successful lives. Many are facing crippling levels of loneliness, metal health issues and anxiety. They can see themselves as passive participants in a world where people and events dictate their destiny.

Those from poorer background face an even greater number of barriers, as their educational attainment continues to fall well below that of those from richer backgrounds. They are also more likely to experience mental and physical health concerns making it harder for them to find and remain in meaningful employment.

Our mission is to develop the attitudes, skills and behaviours young people need to thrive at school, in work, employment and beyond.

The evidence presented in our 2017 report is taken from our own evaluations, independent studies and testimonials from participants, parents, teachers and employers. The findings from data we have collected from participants has been externally verified.

This gives a clear indication that young people who take part in an Outward Bound course while they are in school or as an apprentice or graduate develops skills such as:

  • Confidence
  • Resilience
  • Teamwork and leadership
  • Planning and Goal Setting

Our evidence shows that these skills and behaviours are gained by young people after their course and for months and years that follow.

The Trust provides both challenge and opportunities for young people allowing them to develop their skills and confidence in a range of contexts. Skills which they can take with them and transfer into their everyday life.
Ellen Doherty, General Teaching Council for Scotland (GTCS)

Watch a short animation describing the impact an Outward Bound programme can have on a young person or download our info-graphic.

Feedback from Educators and Publishers

The Outward Bound Trust rightly identify some of the key challenges young people face in today's world. Their solutions are time-honoured, authentic and well-grounded in research. In this educational age where academic progression is so often seen as paramount it is beyond important for programmes such as this to focus on wider human flourishing. The Outward Bound Trust clearly realises character matters."
Matt Bawden, Editor ACE eJournal Character Matters, Director of Our School Day Ltd, Assistant Head Teacher QEGS Ashbourne.

“The Outward Bound Trust gives the ability for young people to realise that what they perceive to be their limits are actually and illusory barrier. Aspiration is vital to the young as belief in their ability to achieve hasn’t yet been fully realised, the Trust provide the means to cross the bridge between what they want, and what they can do.

As an employer I find many of the young lack the confidence to try, that they are too contained within their echo chamber without sufficient exterior influences stretching their ambition. Outward bound give them the opportunity to find out that they are capable of more than they can imagine.

In their latest impact report they give a hard hitting no frills assessment of the challenges they face in helping the young to realise their potential. It also details the effect of their actions on the prospects of those who came into contact with them and maps out a future that should improve the deliverability of their ambition.”
Steve Mitchell, Publisher, Education Magazine.

“It's commonly said that the effect on young people of enabling them to challenge themselves in the natural world is 'immeasurable'; but with its Social Impact Report, the Outward Bound Trust proves otherwise, backing up our instinctive ideas about the benefits of adventurous learning experiences with robust, quantitative evidence across a range of clearly defined criteria.”
Helen Mulley, Editor, Teach Secondary Magazine

“I've always believed that getting children out of the classroom and into the great outdoors has a positive impact on their learning and development. In our fast-paced modern society, with all the distractions which technology offers young people, it's so important that they're given the time and space to switch off, disconnect their devices and focus on themselves, on their characters and on developing the resilience which they will need if they are to become productive and happy citizens. The Outward Bound Trust, with its close ties to the natural world and its belief in the power of teamwork to overcome challenges and develop this character and resilience, has clearly done much to ensure that the young people of today become those productive and happy citizens.”
Jonathan Swift, Managing Editor, Education Today magazine

“In a time when budgets are shrinking, teachers have to be able to justify their reasons for taking children outside of the classroom to learn. Therefore, it has never been more important to be able to carry out research that demonstrates all the ways in which learning outdoors can benefit young people. The Outward Bound Trust's Social Impact Report is invaluable ammunition for teachers who want to prove they can make a difference to their pupil's lives if only they get the opportunity to get them learning in a setting that's different to the classroom. The Social Impact Report is accessible, engaging, and just more evidence in the campaign to broaden pupil's horizons by getting them learning in inspiring, challenging new environments.”
Sarah Holt, Editor of School Travel Organiser Magazine and

Research code of practice

This document outlines the principles and policies that ensures our work is undertaken with the highest level of integrity.