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YMCA secures 20-year lease to continue running Victorian outdoor camps

YMCA secures 20-year lease to continue running Victorian outdoor camps
October 8, 2020

The Victorian Government has announced that the Y will continue to run its five residential camps across Victoria.

Victorian Minister for Community Sport Ros Spence announced yesterday that the YMCA had secured a 20-year lease to continue to manage the award-winning camps at Mt Evelyn, Mt Eliza, Rowsley via Bacchus Marsh, Falls Creek and Anglesea.

For the last 15 years the partnership between the YMCA and the Victorian Government has delivered a range of innovative programs aimed at helping people of all backgrounds and age groups experience the best of the great outdoors.

Commenting on the extended partnership, Minister Spence advised “our camps are inspiring more young people to embrace a healthier and active lifestyle, get connected with nature and importantly, have fun.

“We’re proud that the YMCA will continue to lead these important programs and we look forward to more innovative outdoor programs and initiatives leading to more healthy outcomes for Victorians.”

The popular Kids’ Adventure Outdoors (KAOS) camps and activities days are staged throughout the camps and state and continue to introduce thousands of families and young kids with the opportunity to rediscover the outdoors.

The camps have also provided the setting for innovative nature-based activities, therapies and healing including a recent pilot program assisting young Aboriginal people living in out-of-home care to reconnect with culture through sport and improve their long-term health and wellbeing.

Since 2005, more than a million Victorians visited the camps and participated in a wide range of healthy and active outdoor programs. These camps contribute more than $15 million to the economy and support close to 400 jobs.

The YMCA has also helped establish Australia’s first ever fully accessible adventure high ropes course for people of all ages and abilities at Camp Manyung in Mt Eliza which won a prestigious Golden Award in the Tourism/Inclusive Culture/Mobility Category of the 2016 International Association for Universal Design Awards.

The new partnership will ensure Victoria’s camps continue to provide an opportunity for even more Victorians to tap into the health, social, educational, therapeutic, economic and employment benefits of active participation in the great outdoors.

YMCA Victoria Chief Executive Carolyn Morris welcomed the extension, noting “we’re extremely pleased to continue our partnership with the Victorian Government. We look forward to further developing activities that enhance people’s quality of life through being active and getting outdoors.”

Images: YMCA managed outdoor adventure at the Anglesea outdoor camp.

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