Learning and leading in the outdoors
Through our programs participants will have valuable learning experiences and develop leadership skills that will allow them to go on to greater things.
Belonging, Mastery, Responsibility and Generosity
Whanaungatanga Matatau Takohanga maanakitanga
How we do it
Our approach to Learning is: experiential and learner focused. What occurs through the process of participating in outdoor activities in a group becomes part of the learning experience. Facilitators respond to individuals the group and the learning objectives to best meet the needs and maintain connection between the learner, the objectives and the group. It is an active process of learning that requires engagement from the learners as well as the instructors.
This can either be through direct adventure experiences such as journeys or can be a method of teaching to support other educational outcomes. Programs are structured and designed to meet outcomes but each learner’s experience is considered unique and individual. Students are kept safe emotionally and physically but also encouraged to be courageous and take risks.
What makes it work
Challenge Course Specialists
AdventureWorks specialises in the development and delivery of challenge course programs for personal and social development. We exclusively operate our own challenge course in Mount Albert Auckland, the Mighty River Domain challenge course located at Lake Karapiro and the Waharau challenge course in the Hunua Ranges. We have thorough training and development processes for our staff who are all working towards or have achieved the highest level of certification in New Zealand. Click here to find out more about the AdventureWorks, Mighty River Domain and Waharau challenge courses.
OutdoorsMark Safety Certification
AdventureWorks operates an extensive and effective safety management system designed to meet the Adventure Activity Regulations. Our safety system has been audited by OutdoorsMark and we have achieved certification to operate rock climbing abseiling and challenge course activities throughout the North Island. To view our status on the Register of Adventure Activities click here.
Mark Mandeno – Owner and Director
In 2015 while teaching my kids to surf I fell off a surfboard into shallow water and received a spinal cord injury. My experience of facing and overcoming obstacles, letting go of attachments to ideas of who I thought I needed to be to be loved and appreciated by others. Letting go of goals and re-creating a whole new sense of meaning and purpose in my life is now part of the story of AdventureWorks. I’ve always found the most meaning and purpose and satisfaction in my life when helping other people connect with themselves in more healthy and fulfilling ways. This business, as well as being an example of overcoming obstacles, is my mechanism for living this purpose. Before the injury I was an active adventurer, teacher in charge of an outdoor education programme and trained and worked as a counsellor. It has been a steep but satisfying learning curve going from a teacher of 9 years to a small business owner to learning how to live as a quadriplegic. But there is no such thing as an easy life. Either we are actively working at ourselves and continually and intentionally acting towards meaningful and purposeful living or we are going backwards.
Rachel Hill – General Manager
Karen Everett – Duke of Edinburgh and Operations Coordinator
Karen joined the team in 2014 as the Duke of Edinburgh and Operations Coordinator. She manages the Duke of Edinburgh Hillary Award Adventurous Journey operations and EOTC programmes.
Karen is enthusiastic about the Duke of Edinburgh Adventurous Journey programmes and is really passionate about working in a job that involves scheduling and people. She loves the arts and the outdoors!
Akari Imafuku – Project K Manager and Head Instructor
Akari has been working with AdventureWorks since 2016 and is part of our core group. She works predominantly on the challenge courses, but also manages our Project K programme. Akari has a Diploma in Outdoor Recreation and Leadership and a Bachelor of Sport and Recreation (majoring in Outdoor Education).
Akari’s passion is working with students and supporting them with their personal development and goals. She loves sea kayaking, being in the bush, learning about plants and crafting and has a growing interest in rock climbing.
AdventureWorks calls on a deep pool of contract staff to facilitate programmes using a variety of adventure mediums. They hold qualifications ranging from teaching to sport and recreation, including ropes course facilitation, risk management, rock climbing, kayaking, bush and first aid. However, it is not only the paperwork that is important to us – AdventureWorks facilitators are held in high-regard and consistently receive positive feedback from clients. They bring a range of life experiences to the team and are passionate, enthusiastic and empowering leaders.