Pathfinder Outdoor Education is a non-profit organization that helps youth and adults create more positive communities. We do this through exciting hands-on classes focused on respect for self and others, cooperative problem-solving, active listening, building trust, and developing empathy.
Each year, Pathfinder has the pleasure of facilitating programs for over 6,000 participants. Our experiential educational programs are for students of all ages. All programs - regardless of age or ability of the participants, length of time, or location - are interactive and engaging with a non-competitive curriculum and include time for discussion and debrief to solidify lessons learned. Most programs take place outdoors, not only because it's more fun, but because we have found nature to be the best classroom.
Pathfinder Outdoor Education strives to open minds, promote self-awareness, and develop leadership. We welcome and encourage participants with a diversity of beliefs, abilities and life experiences. Through our programs we hope to encourage new ideas, develop critical thinking, and foster an awareness of how individual values and behaviors can impact yourself, others and the environment.
Pathfinder’s facilitators set us apart from the rest. They bring diverse backgrounds, engaging teaching, and passion to each and every program. Their insightful assessment of your group’s needs and careful sequencing of activities leads to deep discussions allowing participants to transfer learning to everyday life. Laughs, smiles, and encouragement just add to the experience.
Safety and Risk Management
Pathfinder has been facilitating outdoor learning experiences since 1993 and the safety of program participants has been a priority throughout our history. Our facilitators are extensively trained in the prevention and management of risk. Staff hold current certifications in First Aid, CPR/AED, low/high challenge course facilitation, tree climbing, canoeing and lifeguarding. This level of preparedness and staff’s constant vigilance has resulted in an excellent safety record and has allowed us to be the only Association for Experiential Education accredited program in Florida.
Pathfinder focuses on all aspects of our participants’ safety including emotional safety. We ensure the learning environment is one where everyone can communicate openly, trust fellow participants, and fail forward. Pathfinder is a place for people to speak up, test out leadership skills, hear and acknowledge new voices, and grow as a person so you can contribute to your community in a meaningful way.
"I learned so much by observing how the Pathfinders interacted with the students. They were authentic and organic in their interactions. This created an environment for open communication, growth and reflection. We will certainly be rebooking yearly. Thank you! It was so amazing to watch the students move through this transformative process."
"I have never met a group of people so well-prepared and gifted in drawing out behavioral lessons in a 'non-teachy' manner."
"I can't commend the staff enough. They are so good at communicating with students and teachers. Their knowledge and positivity makes the whole experience. I am grateful that this was as much an unforgettable experience for me as I hoped it would be and was for my students."
"The aspects of the Pathfinder program I will use back at school are giving kids the courage and freedom to fail with the knowledge that growth comes from struggle."
"Loved how the Pathfinder leaders engaged the students with questions - both for discipline and reflection. Very effective."
"I enjoyed being able to be an observer and see how the children respond to each other and to the Pathfinders."