Human Nature Adventure Therapy (Human Nature) is an Australian not-for-profit organisation based in Northern NSW. We are passionate about helping young people overcome mental health and behavioural issues.
We are an ACNC recognised Public Benevolent Institution with Deductible Gift Recipient status, and all donations over $2 are tax deductible.
At the heart of what we do is build trust and form healthy relationships. For Human Nature’s Director and Clinical Lead Andy Hamilton – who worked closely with Graham Pringle to create the Recre8 Program in 2008 – this has been his ethos. He developed the model for Recre8 in partnership with the vision of having a completely new Bush Adventure Therapy Program. It combines the best aspects of outdoor education, experiential and embodied learning, and therapeutic practice. Human Nature’s unique suite of nature-connected programs are based on decades of lived experience.
The first programs were successfully piloted with the aid of Adventure Based Counselling Incorporated (ABC). After three successful pilots, our program became known as Recre8 in 2013. Human Nature Adventure Therapy was established as a charitable organisation in 2015 to support the delivery of our therapeutic programs.
We would like to thank our founding Strategic Partners:
- Blue Peter Sea School
- One Health Organisation
- Outward Bound Australia
- The Buttery Drug and Alcohol Rehabilitation Services
These organisations were instrumental in supporting our initial growth and developing and delivering our innovative therapeutic programs.
What We Do
What is Bush Adventure Therapy?
Bush Adventure Therapy (or Wilderness Therapy) is a well-respected methodology that is increasingly widely used internationally, particularly in the US. There it has a longstanding therapeutic reputation having been used since the 1940’s. It harnesses the healing power of Nature and demonstrates how human beings benefit from this essential relationship. In a world where time outdoors is rapidly decreasing, this is of great importance to the health and well-being of young people.
We are a member of the Australian Association for Bush Adventure Therapy here in Australia.
What are our programs?
Our Recre8 program takes disengaged young people on a three-month therapeutic process using the innovative treatment methodology of Bush Adventure Therapy. It is centred around a 10-day wilderness expedition and provides more than 200 hours of support. Our Recre8 program is designed and run by an experienced team of psychologists, counsellors, mentors, volunteers and outdoor leadership professionals. Read more about Recre8.
In 2019, we also launched our new Activ8 program offering professional therapeutic outreach support for young people in non-clinical settings.
Our Elev8 program aims to give past participants the opportunity to develop leadership skills, plan events and activities that help them grow and thrive, and pay it forward through volunteering opportunities.
Under development, our Educ8 program will support training and development for those looking to become more skilled in adventure therapy and will advance the youth mental health sector through advocacy and education.
Who We Help
Our core focus is vulnerable, at-risk young people aged between 14 and 24, primarily from the Northern Rivers region in NSW.
These are young people who may be struggling with
- Mental health issues,
- Childhood trauma,
- Drug and alcohol problems,
- Behavioural difficulties and
- Social exclusion.
Through a network of referral partners, we connect with young people who are not able to access the support they need and are most likely to benefit from what our programs offer. We work closely with their families, schools and relevant supporting agencies including foster care agencies, juvenile justice, youth services, drug and alcohol services.