The BAC Begins - guest writer Kevin Glover
Just a little over ten years ago, Peak 7 Adventures got approved as a 501(c)3 non-profit. It made things official. And if you look at the ministry today, it definitely looks official – multiple office spaces, thousands of days outside with kids each year, and a warehouse chock full of evidence that people believe in the value of getting kids outside.
At the core, though, things are no different. The heart behind the ministry is still there: find faithful leaders to bring kids outside and help them work through a challenging adventure in a way that helps them see God’s love a little better. Peak 7 does this well, and they’ve been doing it well since long before I joined the summer team in 2014.
But there’s been something missing – while it’s true we send kids home changed, is there more we could be doing? Could it be possible for our ministry to impact a kid so deeply that he or she doesn’t just go home changed, but goes home ready to change their street, their school, their world? We decided to take a step forward and see, and this vision of equipping peer leaders is a big part of the vision behind the Bower Adventure Course.
The Bower Adventure Course (BAC) has big goals, and you get a taste of that by glancing at some of the vocab words in our mission statement and goals: ‘resiliency’ is in there; so are ‘hopefulness’ and ‘boldness.’ And we’re pursuing this vision by teaching good, Biblical lessons about leadership and service over the course of fifty-four days of adventure.
Our students come from across the West and from all sorts of backgrounds. Many, as you can imagine, don’t have fairytale pasts behind them. But now, imagine this: eight young men with resilient hearts who are convicted of the hopefulness of the Gospel’s transformative power and have the boldness to carry that vision back into their homes, streets, schools?
We’re taking a threefold approach to equipping our students:
- Build self-confidence through competence: our students have the opportunity to earn high-level wilderness medicine certifications and will be trained in many areas of backcountry travel.
- Build leaders with servants’ hearts: our students have the opportunity to demonstrate real-life leadership in backcountry group management, navigation and decision-making – all through a lens of Christ-like servanthood.
- Make room for the Spirit to work through daily Bible studies, targeted devotional exercises, and intentional solo time to allow students the space to reflect on their faith and the ways God is calling them to grow.
Here’s a quick breakdown of our itinerary:
June 20-27 | Spokane Warehouse Training
June 28-July 8 | Olympic National Park Thru-Hike
July 9-17 | Climbing at Smith Rock, Rafting the Deschutes River
July 18-24 | Service at the Union Gospel Mission Camp
July 25-30 | Mountaineering, Glacier Peak
July 31-August 1 | Service, Rest and Planning in Seattle
August 2-9 | Student-Led Expedition, North Cascades
August 12 | Graduation
It’s a big vision, and we need your help. There will be challenges over the course of the summer and we will need prayer and support. Feel free to reach out to Peak 7 if you want to know specific ways to support the BAC.
My name is Kevin Glover and I’m leading the Bower Adventure Course (BAC) this summer. This is my third summer of involvement with Peak 7 and I was recently hired to come on during the off-season as the Volunteer and Marketing Coordinator. I’ll be attending seminary in Fall 2017, where I hope to learn more about youth ministry and non-profit management. I’ve been working side-by-side with Peak 7’s Spokane Program Coordinator, Alex Nycum, who has spent countless hours recruiting applicants, conducting interviews and finagling the logistics of an expedition-style adventure.