Our strategic focus for the next 10 years is to reach even more New Zealanders with the life-changing impact of Outward Bound, by increasing our annual student numbers from 1,800 to 6,000. To make this a reality, we are planning to build a second Outward Bound school on the North Island’s Coromandel Peninsula.
WHY A SECOND SCHOOL?
We want to make Outward Bound accessible to as many New Zealanders as possible. Attending an OB course can be a life-changing experience, especially for young people at a formative time in their life.
Outward Bound builds resilience, confidence, and compassion, and truly changes lives for the better. At a time when our young people are feeling at crisis point due to numerous global factors, they need our support more than ever to overcome this challenge.
By increasing to 6,000 students each year we will be supporting around 10% of school leavers annually. This will make a massive impact and is the basis of our guiding star – One in Every Whare. Our goal is that in every workplace meeting room, every lecture theatre, every family gathering, there will be at least one person there who has been on an Outward Bound course. The positive impact on them of their course will ripple out into New Zealand society.
WHY THE COROMANDEL?
One-third of NZ’s growing population lives in the greater Auckland area.
To fulfil our commitment to make our courses as accessible as possible, our new school needs to be closer to Auckland and other significant populations in the Waikato and Bay of Plenty.
Anakiwa is a long way from where most New Zealanders live, and for many students, the distance to our remote Marlborough Sounds school can be financially unattainable.
WHAT ABOUT ANAKIWA?
The Anakiwa school will continue to be the heart of Outward Bound in New Zealand, the largest site, and the location of our iconic 21-day courses.
Anakiwa will remain the centre of excellence, a hub which has formed the soul of Outward Bound for 60 years.
But in terms of capacity, Anakiwa is finely tuned to a maximum capacity of around 150 students per month. On top of the impossible logistics of accommodating another 4,200 students each year, the solo sites and bush routes need to be carefully managed to avoid overuse.
WHAT'S HAPPENING NOW?
Outward Bound’s Strategy & Innovation Director Simon Graney has spent the past 12 months running a second school feasibility study, during which he considered a number of factors including the natural assets of water, bush and land as well as climate resilience, transport access, local community, and potential iwi relationships.
"Our utopia would be finding a site that offered direct bush and sea access, but realistically, we are also open to two nearby sites that may include, for example, a main base near the bush and then a satellite site with sea access," says Simon.
Outward Bound is very fortunate to have significant initial investment for this project from our generous long-term supporters Dick and Diana Hubbard Foundation, Andrew and Jenny Smith, Thanksgiving Trust, and other long-standing supporters.
WANT TO HEAR MORE?
Anna Thomas of Radio New Zealand recently interviewed Simon about Outward Bound's plan for North Island expansion. Listen to the interview here. (11 minutes)