VIU Healing Through Adventure: Exploring Adventure Therapy In Latvia 2024

Field School Dates: June 12 - 24, 2024

Program Overview

This field school experience will take participants to various remote locations around Latvia, where we will learn how a variety of Latvian human services professional use nature and adventure-based activities to support health and well being in a variety of sectors. We will be actively participating in a variety of wilderness-based activities and camping in remote regions for the first six days the field school. Next, we’ll be attending the Gathering for Adventure Therapy Europe, a 4-day conference that brings together hundreds of human services professionals from across Europe to share best practices and research about the application of nature and adventure-based activities in support of mental health and well being. Finally, we’ll experience a traditional Latvian Sauna Ritual to close the experience before heading home.

GSO Funding Opportunity

This is a Global Skills Opportunity (GSO) program approved field school. This means that participants who meet the GSO funding requirements (see the GSO funding application) are eligible for grants of up to $10,000 to cover the costs associated with this field school.

Academic Credits

A total of 6 academic credits are available as part of the field school: CYC 391 - Therapeutic Applications of Wilderness (3 credits); and HHS 430 - International Perspectives on the Social Determinants of Health. There will be readings and assignments required as part of these courses that will be delivered remotely through VIU Learn during and early June before departure. While this field school is open to students from any department at VIU, upper year status is strongly recommended as we will be working with advanced models of counseling, health, and well-being. Some additional work will be required during the field experience.

If you have questions about the academic content and requirements of these courses, contact

Find out more information in the 2024 Latvia Field School Application Package.

Application Procedure

Deadline to Apply: January 19, 2024

Interested students should submit their completed Field School Application Form to and GSO Funding Application to by January 19, 2024

  • Currently enrolled in 2nd year or higher in a VIU program (must be enrolled in an undergraduate degree program to be eligible for GSO funding)
  • In good academic standing (not on academic probation)
  • Students must be eligible to enroll in the following VIU courses as part of the field school:
    • CYC 391 Therapeutic Applications of Wilderness Programming (3 credits)
    • HHS 430 International Field School (3 credits)
  • Community members/community practitioners are not eligible to apply
  • Student applicants from other post-secondary institutions may be considered based on space

We are estimating the total cost for the field school experience (including meals, tent accommodations, and transport in Latvia, tuition, and flights/insurance/equipment expenses to be between $7,770 (if 12 students participate) and $9,126 (if 8 students participate).


Successful applicants must submit a $250 non-refundable deposit by February 16, 2024.


Payment must be made by the student record. Credit cards are NOT accepted.


Please review the VIU Education Abroad Cancellation, Withdrawal and Refund Policy.

Passports: All participants must have a valid passport good for six months after your return. Applications for Canadian passports are available at Canada Post offices. Students must be able to legally travel outside of Canada.

International students going abroad must make sure their TRV and Study Permits are up-to-date and won't expire while they are abroad.


Visas: Students will be responsible for applying for and securing their own visas (where appropriate). Canadian citizens will not normally require a visa.

International students may require a Schengen visa as per European Union entrance requirements.

Stephen Javorski

Education Abroad

Building 255, 2nd Floor
Phone: (250) 753-3245 local 2494