Stories from Blue Ridge’s young adult program, Emerald Arrow

CLAYTON, GA, June 14, 2023 /24-7PressRelease/ — Blue Ridge Therapeutic Wilderness is a licensed and accredited wilderness therapy program for adolescents and young adults ages 13-28. Students at Blue Ridge are often facing mental health challenges related to anxiety, depression, substance use, academic failure, trauma and more. Emerald Arrow, Blue Ridge’s therapeutic young adult program, has served emerging adults in a safe and effective wilderness setting for nearly 5 years. While in the program, students in Emerald Arrow are encouraged to connect, build community and examine their emotions, families and life experiences in order to heal and move forward in life with confidence.

One Emerald Arrow student recently shared her experiences post-wilderness therapy. Considering her life before treatment, she shared, “I was in such a dark place that the therapy [at home] did practically nothing. That’s when I chose to go to Emerald Arrow. I truly believed no one cared about me… I knew I wanted to change my whole life around.”

The Blue Ridge team works to provide all students with experiences and tools which enhance and contribute to their quality of life long after leaving the program. Young adults who choose to attend Emerald Arrow explore creative endeavors, engage in mindfulness practices, enjoy visits from professional guest speakers, and participate in cooking classes and life-skills workshops, all while doing their own personal and family work with a licensed therapist.

As for life after wilderness therapy, the Blue Ridge alum explained, “Last week I finished up my first outdoor education job, where I led and facilitated hikes, rock-climbing, rafting, team-building and more for 8th graders. I was offered a job with an outdoor adventure company and will be moving to Missoula, Montana before the end of the month to work full-time as an instructor – getting to hike, mountain bike, raft, climb, kayak with kids and teens!”

In a letter to current students, the student offered her story of healing, leaving the group with a sentiment of hope and encouragement:

“I am the best version of myself. I continue to grow daily and use the skills I learned in wilderness therapy. When I feel lost, I remind myself of who I am and what I have to offer this world. I am brave, capable and talented.”

Blue Ridge Therapeutic Wilderness is a licensed and accredited outdoor child caring program that provides mental health treatment from licensed therapists and skilled outdoors professionals. Removed from the distractions of daily home life, students (ages 13-18, and 18-29 in the Emerald Arrow young adult program) experience the abundance of the healing wilderness setting of the North Georgia Chattahoochee National Forest, where they live 24/7 in nature with a group of peers and our supportive Field Instructors. Blue Ridge provides clinically-focused assessment and evidence-based therapeutic approaches that teach students communication skills, connection, healthy emotional and behavioral habits and other skills needed to be aware of and act on their values. To learn more about Blue Ridge Therapeutic Wilderness, visit or speak with an admissions counselor by calling (888) 914-1050.

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