Horizons - Outward Bound


For Ages 18+ Duration 8 days

Take your independence to the next level with an 8 day Horizons course, adapted for those with intellectual disabilities.

You’ll be placed in a team of 12 others with a range of intellectual disabilities, working together as a team and supporting one another to overcome the week’s challenges.

Horizons has given my daughter such a valuable growth in achievement, self-esteem and belief in her abilities.

Bookings & Fees

Tuesday 27 August – Tuesday 3 September 2024
Monday 4 – Monday 11 November 2024
Monday 17 – Monday 24 February 2025
Monday 5 – Monday 12 May 2025

Funding is available - email adapted@outwardbound.co.nz


About the course

You’ll experience all the adventure of an Outward Bound course, with more rest breaks and more support available from three Outward Bound instructors and two support workers.

From sailing to high ropes, you’ll try all sorts of new activities, ensuring you return home with the motivation to try out new experiences and test your boundaries.

Horizons is ideal for those aged 18+ with an intellectual disability. Past participants have included those with Down Syndrome, Fragile X Syndrome, and Williams Syndrome. See our FAQs below for conditions on course participation.


Participant requirements

All participants must be:

  • Independent in personal care (instructors can support taking medication - medication must be in blister packs)
  • Able to communicate clearly and understand safety instructions
  • A team player who can well with others in a group environment
  • Able to attend without a carer, (arrangements for travelling to and from the course will be made with their associated organisation)
  • Have experience being away from home overnight
  • Capable of taking part in a full day of activities with rest breaks
  • Comfortable in and around the water, including having head under - lifejackets available
  • Self-managing of inappropriate behaviour (e.g. sexual or aggressive behaviour)
  • Able to travel independently to and from the course.

What you'll need

When you come to Outward Bound, there are items that you will need to bring with you and items that we will supply. As for the things that you need to bring - we encourage you to borrow as many items as you can, or buy second hand!

Check out our course gear list for a full run down and some hot tips on what to bring and what not to.

Gear list


Meet our adapted team

Leonie King (she/her) -  Hoa Kanorau | Diversity & Inclusion Partner 

Kia ora, I have spent my adult life providing opportunities for people to discover their potential through sharing experiences in the outdoors. After study in New Zealand, some overseas adventures and raising three children, I was lucky enough to join the team at Outward Bound New Zealand. 

To me Outward Bound is all about empowering people, allowing individuals to find their own voice, connect with our beautiful environment and connect with others. I love that I can be the starting point for someone’s Outward Bound journey.


Stef Waldon-Gibbons (she/her) - Kaimātai Whakauru | Enrolments Specialist

Kia ora, Being outside in nature is my happy place and have spent most of my life tramping, kayaking, rock climbing and teaching others in the outdoor environment.  I attended an Outward Bound course as a young person and I found the experience defining for me in my direction in life. I was inspired to study and work in various outdoor instructing roles before beginning my role as Kaiako – Outward Bound Instructor in Anakiwa where I worked for over 5 years.

Now in my role as an enrolment specialist for adapted courses, I have the privilege of supporting and empowering people in their journey to attending their own Outward Bound course. Having experienced all sides of the Outward Bound journey, I hope to help individuals feel ready and supported to take up the amazing experience and challenge their course will bring.

Contact Leonie and Stef via adapted@outwardbound.co.nz

Leonie King


Stef Waldon-Gibbons


Duke of Edinburgh's Hillary Award

Are you completing the Duke of Edinburgh’s Hillary Award? Select Outward Bound courses can be used to complete your Adventurous Journey section and/or Residential section. Find more information here.



Some of our commonly asked questions answered...

Horizons can cater to people with a range of intellectual disabilities, including some mental health conditions and neurodiversity. It’s best to call us so we can make sure the course is right for you.

All participants should be able to independently manage their personal care and medication. You should be able to communicate clearly and understand safety instructions. Horizons participants must be able to attend without a carer and have experience of spending time away from home.

You will need to be able to take part in a full day of activities, including up to a full day of walking, and be comfortable in and around the water.

The days can be quite busy at Outward Bound as there is a lot to fit in. You will start early each morning with some exercise and a dip in the water before heading off for the day's activities. There will be rest breaks on this course, and life jackets are available at all times if you want one.

The course will be run by 2 of our expert Outward Bound instructors who are there to make sure the environment is as safe and supportive as possible. There will also be 2 support workers who have completed their own Outward Bound course in the past who are there to help you out. Please be aware that Outward Bound is not a respite care facility.

There is full funding available for Work and Income clients and others eligible for MSD funding - including travel to and from the course.

Funding may be available for those not eligible for MSD or WINZ funding. Get in touch with us to see if you are eligible.

View all our Frequently Asked Questions

Course Stories

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