Adventure Links (AL) is an ACA-Accredited experiential education organization located in the Hemlock Overlook Regional Park of Clifton, VA near Washington, DC. With an emphasis on youth development, Adventure Links facilitates summer camps, high adventure outings and team building programs to schools, youth organizations, corporations and adult groups in the local metro area as well as the neighboring states of Maryland, Pennsylvania, and West Virginia.
Adventure Links was founded by Anna and Austin Birch in 1994. With their combined twenty years of experience educating youth, they set to develop an organization that incorporated personal growth and discovery with an appreciation for the outdoors. Their endeavor has since experienced growth itself, and directors To support the mission of Adventure Links, additional staff members are evaluated and expected to reflect the same ideals as the founders. Often staff are educated with the philosophies of outdoor education and organizational behavior and have previous experience working with youth. Adventure Links has hired individuals from college programs such as Penn State University, UNH, Slippery Rock University, Prescott College, Brevard College, FSU, Unity College, Oberlin College and Johns Hopkins University. In the summer of 2009 Adventure Links announced a partnership with Northern Virginia Regional Park Authority and now runs all group programs at Hemlock Overlook Regional Park for NVRPA with Adventure Links running from their base of operations inside the state park at 13220 Yates Ford Road in Clifton, Virginia.
Adventure Links has continued to expand its reach by fostering relationships with local businesses and organizations. Anna Birch has since become a member of the Loudoun Environmental Stewardship Alliance (LESA) and the Entrepreneurs Organization (EO), career advancements that illustrate the foundation of adventure within the company.
Adventure Links offers both adventure camps and custom contract programs. During the summer months, they run day, overnight, and expedition camps for youth ages eight to seventeen and have approximately 2,500 campers for these trips. Adventure Links’ staff members lead week-long programs with comprehensive itineraries including rock climbing, kayaking, caving, team building and survival skills. Most camps are run in the Virginia area, while the expeditions travel more extensively, including North Carolina and New England programs.
Adventure Links offers contract programs to corporations, adult group, schools, youth organizations, scout troops and church groups. Contract programs run year round, and are developed with the organizations’ goals as a guideline. Pre-program development looks to address the groups’ needs, preparing itineraries that range from strictly adventurous to improving communication and resolving conflicts. Adventure Links has worked with schools and youth organizations including at-risk youth and special needs children.