The first time you step up to a rock wall and struggle to find a foot-hold, or repel down a cliff, you are full of anxiety and doubt. Experience, trust in your fellow climbers, and your support system eventually help to quell your fears&mdahs;but what if you had no support system? What if you had to face that climb without ropes, a harness, or other people to help you? For many young people in middle schools, high schools, colleges, and universities, they are facing that wall alone! For these kids the wall isn't made of rock; it's made of the stigma against mental illness.
Talking about mental illness isn't taboo, but too many youth fear being labeled as "different" or even bullied if they discuss concerns with their friends or family members. As they hide their health needs instead of asking for help, their fears go unaddressed and "fitting in" just distances them further from their social connections. But LETS Educational Foundation provides outreach, education, and a safe place for kids to take leadership in mental health so they don't have to face stigma alone. It's a lot like facing a rock with On Belay!
On Belay: Rock Climbing and Outdoor Education is dedicated to helping you overcome your fears and understand your own awesome strength by teaching you how to scale a rock wall. We offer you the only climbing experience where all proceeds from your trip directly support a children's charity. Your climb with On Belay will empower LETS to provide funding for school and community LETS Clubs, which in turn help youth find a support system to erase the stigma of mental illness. We climb so they can soar!