2022 Kentucky Military Teen Adventure Camp

Grants and Contracts Details


2022 MILITARY TEEN ADVENTURE CAMPS STATEMENT OF WORK - KENTUCKY a) Camp titles, projected dates, camp descriptions and number of slots available for campers: 1) Red River Gorge Rock Climbing, Rappelling, and Canopy Excursion – Campton, KY. June 10-14 2022. Camp for military parents and their teen children including rock climbing and rappelling in the world-famous Red River Gorge and a canopy tour including ziplines at speeds up to 55 MPH soaring 300 feet over the Gorge. Availability: 36 slots (18 parent/child teams). 2) Ocoee Whitewater Rafting, Climbing, Rappelling and Outdoor Adventure – Ocoee, TN; June 24-27, 2022. Camp for military parents and their teen children including whitewater rafting, ziplining, rock climbing, mud/water pit challenges and lakeside activities. Availability: 60 slots (30 parent/child teams). 3) Ocoee Whitewater Rafting, Climbing, Rappelling and Outdoor Adventure – Ocoee, TN; July 8-11, 2022. Camp for military parents and their teen children including whitewater rafting, ziplining, rock climbing, mud/water pit challenges and lakeside activities. Availability: 60 slots (30 parent/child teams). b) Travel arrangements for youth to and from the camp: Each camp will originate and end at the camp locations (Campton, KY and Ocoee, TN). Transportation allowances for participants for all camps will be provided through the grant (see budget). Transportation to and from the airport will be provided on an as-needed basis at no cost to participants through employees or volunteers. Reimbursement beyond the budgeted allowances for airfare or mileage to get to and from a camp also will be provided on an as- needed basis (see budget). All program costs for each camp are provided through the grant (see budget). There will be a $30 deposit per person to reserve camper slots that will, in turn, be used toward camp t-shirts and reusable water bottles since these are not allowable costs on the grant. The types and lengths of camps maximize appeal for participants from all branches and locations maximize ease of travel for dispersed families. c) Regional recruitment plans: Regional recruitment will be spearheaded by the grant directors and partners and will involve members of the core camp team, state military partners, Family Resource Centers, county Extension offices, Yellow Ribbon facilitators, Family Readiness Groups, garrison newspapers, Military Missions, School Liaison Officers, former MTAC participants and more in close communication with Purdue University. Each camp team member will disseminate information to families with whom they work to promote the camps and encourage military youth/parents to register. Flyers will be disseminated and posted on the UK Family and Consumer Sciences military webpage, UK 4-H Youth Development webpage and websites of grant partners. The grant team and partners will also utilize targeted social media advertising to reach the target audience for these camps. Information about the camps (contact information, camp details, registration information) will be posted on the existing Kentucky MTAC website (https://fcs- hes.ca.uky.edu/content/military-teen-adventure-camps) and the existing Kentucky MTAC Facebook page (http://www.facebook.com/pages/Military-Extension-Adventure- Camps/218917788128919). Two compilation videos containing footage from past Kentucky military parent/teen camps will be shown (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ge-GuLSOIcg&feature=youtu.be) at any events where military families will be attending, such as Family Readiness Group events, reintegration programs, Extension military programs, garrison Boys and Girls Club or 4-H programs, or Survivor Outreach Services programs and will be shown during military briefings with Family Programs, National Guard, Army Reserve and the Kentucky Family Readiness Conference. Registration for each camp will begin at least 2 months prior to the camp start date. Registration will be open to Guard, Reserve, Active Duty, or Veteran parent/teen teams from any state and all service branches. First priority will go to those who have experienced at least one deployment and who are geographically dispersed. The application process for the camps will be online to make it easy for participants to register and streamline the registration process. Registrants will be mailed an instructional packet containing all information needed to pack and prepare for the camps before each camp. d) The length of each camp (# of days engaged in camp activities) and draft schedule: All 3 camps included in this proposal will be 4 days and 3 nights in length. Participants will attend in parent/teen teams (see section e, support objectives below for rationale). Draft schedules for each of the camps are as follows. Red River Gorge Rock Climbing Adventure Schedule (1 camp) Day 1 1:00 – Depart Lexington, KY 3:30-4pm – Arrive at campground in Red River Gorge 4:30pm – Welcome, set up camp 6:30pm – Dinner 8:00-10:00pm – Evening activities Day 2 7:00am – Breakfast, pack lunches 8:00am – Depart for Via ferrata, 8:30am – Via ferrata orientation 12:00pm – Lunch, then more vertical fun! 1:00pm – Rock climbing, and rappelling site 5:00pm – Groups arrive back at camp 5:00-6:30pm – Family Time 6:30pm – Dinner 8:00-10:00pm – Evening activities Day 3 7:00am – Breakfast 8:15am – Depart for River 8:30am – Group Paddle Trip Down Red River 12:00pm – Lunch 1:00pm –Paddle to Creation Falls, swim at jumping rock swimming hole 3:00pm Hiking Tour to Scenic Overlook 6:00pm – Groups arrive back at camp 7:00pm – Dinner 8:00-10:00pm – Evening activities Day 4 8:00am – Breakfast, Break Camp, Pack up 9:30am – Canopy Tour and Zipline 11:30 – Camp Debrief 12:00pm- Depart Red River Gorge for Home Ocoee Whitewater Rafting Excursion Draft Schedule (2 camps) Day 1 10:00 – Depart Lexington, KY 3:00-5:00pm – Check-in at Ocoee Retreat Center 6:30 – Dinner 8:00 – 10:00 – Campfire Program (rules, schedule, activities) Day 2 8:30 AM – Breakfast 9:30 – Morning group activities/games on the big lawn 12:00 PM – Lunch 12:30 – Adventure Activity – Lake Awesome (blob and water adventures) 5:00 – Family Time 6:30 – Dinner 8:00 – 10:00 PM – Campfire Program Day 3 8:00 AM – Breakfast 8:45 – Rafting Trip - 12:00 PM – Lunch on the river 12:30 – Mega Zipline and Aerial Adventure Park 4:00 – Free Time, Family Time 6:00 – Dinner 7:00 – 9:00 PM – Campfire Program and preparations for next morning Day 4 8:00 AM – Breakfast 8:30 AM – Rock Climbing and giant swing 11:30 – Camp Debrief 12:00 PM – Depart Ocoee Retreat Center * These are sample camp itineraries that may need to be changed, altered, or substituted based on trip logistics, weather, booking/availability, etc. e) Support objectives Marek, Brock, D’Aniello, Hickey, Hollingsworth, Mendes, Moore, & O’Rourke (2013) found in their study on reintegration that the most successful programs appear to attend to the parent-child relationship while building resiliency which can produce sustainable and long-term improvements. This project addresses the theme of “outdoor adventure for family reconnection” by bringing military parents and their teenage children together for fun and engaging experiential learning opportunities that advance the life skills of self-responsibility, decision making, resiliency, cooperation, responsible citizenship, and problem solving. The active deployment and post-deployment stages can be times of great joy, pride, and family cohesiveness, but they can also be times of great stress and disorganization. While a parent is deployed, the rest of the family must make sacrifices and work together as a team to fill in the gaps. As service members return from deployment, they must reintegrate into family life. The family must renegotiate roles and responsibilities throughout both stages, often repeatedly due to multiple deployments. Family members change during the separations, and this can be especially true of teens. Everyone must work together to establish a “new normal.” Furthermore, different family members experience reintegration challenges differently and have their own unique struggles (Marek et al., 2013). However, if support and education is available to help families handle reintegration in a healthy manner, it can be a time for parents and their children to connect on new and deeper levels and strengthen the entire family system as a result. It was revealed through past Military-Extension Adventure Camp evaluation data from Kentucky that participants found the time together with their children, interacting with fellow service members and their kids, teens interacting with their peers, sharing stories and camaraderie were especially important and meaningful and that the camps aided in reconnection (Ashurst, K.A., Smith, L.W., Frey, L.M., Little, C.A., Werner-Wilson, T.A., Stephenson, L., & Werner-Wilson, R.J., 2014). Exemplary quotes from 2021 included: • Wanted to thank you personally for such a great weekend. We had a ton of fun and it was nice to have someone to share my fears in, plus my shared love of food. Your personality was great and it helped with pulling all of us together. The weekend doesn’t go as smoothly without all of you. • Good afternoon! Wanted to send you a quick note to you know what an awesome weekend we had at camp. My boys didn’t want it to end. The staff did an excellent job organizing activities, the UK staffer was a boss at meal prep and management, the kids and parents all connected and had a blast, and it was altogether a great weekend. Thank you so much for all you do to make these camps possible. Thank you again. We appreciate the work that goes into these trips. • Thank you. My husband and daughter raved about this camp and most definitely will be back. Thank you for leading this outstanding program. We truly appreciate your efforts and support! • I just wanted to write and thank you all for allowing me the opportunity to be part of the MTAC program this past weekend. That program is so incredibly impactful for the participants (and staff) that I am honored to be part of it. Thank you for allowing me the chance to be part of the program. You all do great and important work. If I can ever be part again, I look forward to that opportunity. • I hope all is well. [After attending a camp], I posted info about MTAC on several social media sites. I am also sending it out to our resiliency folks. I hope this will increase demand and keep this great program going. I was also thinking of writing an article about our experience. I’d like to ask other participants to contribute as well. Just some thoughts. • I am writing this letter to give thanks and recognition to everyone who supported and helped with the [KY] M.T.A.C. camps in June and July. It is important to me to give thanks and recognition to all the selfless women and men involved who make these camps happen. It was a long ride for me being I live in northern New Jersey… Kentucky is 7 hours and the ride to Tennessee is 10 hours. It is a horrible car ride to say the least… I do this because there is nowhere else I would rather be. The amount of time the staff spend loading and unloading supplies in the trailer and preparing and cooking meals takes allot of teamwork and effort along with getting the different activities all done. It is impressive to say the least to help get all the tents and living areas set up and get food to a large number of people. During the camp we also get everything cleaned up between activities. The activities bring the teens and kids closer to their parents and families. I do not have the words to tell you how much the camp means to the parents and the teens, along with the staff. To see kids playing outside and people talking and congregating together at the camp fire in the evening warms my heart and gives me hope. It was a change to not see everyone on their cell phones or tablets, or just isolating and being lost in social media. It was like I entered a time portal into the 1970”s where people did outdoor things and enjoyed nature and fresh air…lol. I did not have the greatest childhood, and innocence was lost over 7 deployments during the cost of war throughout the middle east but, it helps me so much to help others and stay involved. You guys gave me that gift. I wanted to take this time to tell you what an honor it was to help and be involved. god bless everyone involved. Furthermore, evaluation data from prior years of Military Teen Adventure Camps revealed that the camps have helped youth form more trusting relationships with their friends and turn to adults for help if needed; a positive correlation between having an adult available to talk to and being able to talk to friends, understanding friends more, and being able to trust in friends more; and a decrease in post-camp reports of both adolescent and parental anxiety and adolescent depression (Ashurst et al., 2014). As part of data analysis run on 2018 camps, paired-samples t- tests were conducted to evaluate the relative difference on the Connor-Davidson Resilience Scale 10 for service members (n = 43) and adolescents (n =54) before attending a MTAC camp compared to after attending a MTAC camp. For service members, general efficacy was statistically higher after attending a MTAC camp (M = 35.42, SD = 4.89) than before attending a MTAC camp (M = 32.86, SD = 5.94), t(42) = -4.73, p < .001, d = 0.47. The mean difference in general efficacy was 2.56, 95% CI [-3.65, -1.47]. This magnitude of difference indicates that a randomly chosen service member who participated in the camp will have greater resilience after attending the camp 63% of the time. For adolescents, general efficacy also was statistically higher after attending a MTAC camp (M = 30.09, SD = 8.71) than before attending a MTAC camp (M = 28.44, SD = 8.04), t(53) = -2.43 p = .019, d = 0.20. The mean difference in general efficacy was 1.65, 95% CI [-3.01, -0.29]. This magnitude of difference indicates that a randomly chosen adolescent who participated in the camp will have greater resilience after attending the camp 56% of the time. Data also were collected during the 2018 camps using the Youth Outcomes Battery. When comparing the collected data of teen participants at the MTAC camps to the normative data
Effective start/end date3/1/227/31/22


  • Purdue University: $147,582.00


Explore the research topics touched on by this project. These labels are generated based on the underlying awards/grants. Together they form a unique fingerprint.