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Project Venture

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Project Venture is an outdoor experiential youth development program designed primarily for 5th- to 8th-grade American Indian youth. It aims to develop the social and emotional competence that facilitates youths' resistance to alcohol, tobacco, and other drug use. Based on traditional American Indian values such as family, learning from the natural world, spiritual awareness, service to others, and respect, Project Venture's approach is positive and strengths based. The program is designed to foster the development of positive self-concept, effective social interaction skills, a community service ethic, an internal locus of control, and improved decision-making and problem-solving skills. The central components of the program include a minimum of 20 1-hour classroom-based activities, such as problem-solving games and initiatives, conducted across the school year; weekly after-school, weekend, and summer skill-building experiential and challenge activities, such as hiking and camping; 3- to 10-day immersion summer adventure camps and wilderness treks; and community-oriented service learning and service leadership projects throughout the year.