potentially overwhelming demands of parenting an additional child. Meeting the basic needs of these children is sometimes all the caregiver can do. The aftermath of the traumatic event in conjunction with financial burdens makes wilderness trips unattainable.
Healing Lands seeks to bridge this gap because we believe a multi-day wilderness experience is potentially an effective and life long method for addressing trauma.
The Healing Lands Project is seeking to raise $21,504 to fund a June 2019 river trip. This amount covers the outfitting cost for 12 children in the ACASI program as well as the amount needed to facilitate travel of their caregivers transporting the children to Flagstaff, Ariz. from all across the state. Funds will also be used for follow-up nature outings to provide counseling/peer support with the group .
Healing Lands is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization and all donations go directly to the Healing Lands Project account managed by the Northern Arizona University Foundation.
The Healing Lands Project launched its first trip in June 2018.The 5-day expedition on the San Juan River, UT involved 8 children in the ACASI program along with four staff members from the Family Violence Institute. The trip was guided by Grand Canyon Youth.
It was the first time any of these youths had ever been backcountry camping or seen rock art or had the opportunity to bond with other kids from violent homes in a supportive environment. They instantly became best friends with each other and said they discovered peace from looking at the night sky and listening to the sound of the river. They learned how to set up a tent and identify fossils.. After five days of sleeping on the ground and no cell phones, they asked: When are we going on the next trip? Can I bring my brother next time? We appreciate your support in continuing this important program so there are many next times.
© Photo by Whit Richardson
Healing Lands seeks to utilize the beauty and serenity of a wilderness river trip to bring healing to children and adolescents who are victims of family violence and have lost a parent to intimate partner homicide. These children often lose both parents simultaneously, one to homicide and a second to incarceration or suicide.
According to Department of Justice statistics, approximately half of all homicides in the Unites State involving a female victim are perpetrated by a domestic partner. This is the worst kind of family violence and it impacts approximately 3,000 children per year.
ACASI is one of the few programs in the nation that provides comprehensive services to this vulnerable population of family violence victims. The caregivers who assume responsibility for the children after the traumatic event are often relatives who are also experiencing grief. Their stress is compounded by new and
The Healing Lands Project supports wilderness experiences for juveniles served by the Arizona Child and Adolescent Survivor Initiative (ACASI). A program of Northern Arizona University's Family Violence Institute, ACASI provides direct services to children and adolescents who’ve lost a parent to domestic violence homicide. Healing Lands is a new initiative of FVI to engage ACASI children in the outdoors by combining therapeutic services and wilderness adventure on a clinically supported river trip. We believe nature offers an opportunity to child survivors for healing not available in clinical settings.