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2013 Top-Rated Nonprofit

Wilderness Works Inc

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Children & Youth, Youth Development Programs

Mission: Providing children with scarce resources and little guidance with consistent, safe and well supervised enrichment activities and opportunities for personal growth.

Community Stories

24 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

Andrew86

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Wilderness Works' City Camp lets me connect to young men, many of whom have little or no father figure. It lets me be a good role model and I feel thoroughly cared for as a volunteer. There are many meetings just to check in and see how we can make city camp better, regardless of what has been done before. It's amazing.

EmilyJoyCook

Board Member

Rating: 5

I have been on the Board of Wilderness Works for nearly two years now and I absolutely love the mission of this organization. Prior to becoming a board memeber I was a volunteer and had a chance to spend time with the children. I was hook,line and sinker from that point on. We beleive exposure to the outdoors can build confidence and character in these children who may otherwise never get the enrichment of these experiences. Please go to our wbsite to read ore on everything that we do!

optporter

Volunteer

Rating: 5

My son attended camp in early 2000's and I was a volunteer. I raised him by myself and it wasn't easy. Bill is like a father to so many of these kids. How he stays helpfull and upbeat year round I'll never know. I do know he draws positive energy from the kids who love being there, and knowing you're making a difference gives a big boost. Many of these "kids" are still in touch with Bill years after they attended camp.

Previous Stories
1

Donor

Rating: 5

I am proud to be a supporter of this wonderful effort. Wilderness Works provides services to Atlanta's key homeless shelters and elementary schools serving kids and families facing economic challenges. Wilderness Works has something going on almost every weekend and during most weeks of the summer so that children can learn about so many thing (and particularly getting out in nature), make new friends and having safe place to go. Two thumbs up for this great outfit!

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I am a social worker and work with grandparents raising grandchildren. I have made many referrals to Wilderness Works and I do it with the utmost confidence that the children will be loved, nurtured, treated with respect and will have boundaries. I have seen Bill with the children and appreciate his authenticity, his obvious caring and his clarity about what is appropriate behavior and actions. He is a gem and his dedication to the children is clear. I am confident that when a child participates in Wilderness Works, there will be an opportunity to grow and learn.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I love and miss Wilderness Works dearly. I was a regular volunteer with them from 2008-2010 until I moved away to the Bay Area in California. I loved chaperoning, going on the field trips, being a camp counselor, but most of all, I loved the kids and Mr. Bill. I always felt very needed and useful when I was with them, and I had a blast the whole time too.
I loved the slumber parties on the weekend, because I felt like a kid again while still being one of the "grown-ups". We painted each others nails, watched movies, ate popcorn, had dance-offs, it didn't matter what we were doing, the kids always found entertainment in whatever we were doing.
I fondly remember volunteering when Bryan Gumbel from the Today show came around. The kids were so excited to be on TV. By the end of the afternoon, when all the cameras and people were gone, there were tons of new toys to play with. I found the kids playing with the boxes instead of the new toys! : D
I learned a lot from the kids about how to have fun and lighten up a little.

Mr. Bill is a great man and to this day,I look up to him very much. I have never met anyone as selfless as Bill Mickler, and he very much inspires me to be that kind of a person. I am positive that the kids feel the same way. The impact that he has on these beautiful children's lives is amazing. In the 3 years that I volunteered, it was so awesome to see the kids grow up before my eyes, and I felt special to be a part of it during my time there. It was so great to see the kids who were growing out of "camper" years to then become the chaperones. Bill doesn't forget about ANYONE.
I have worked with MANY nonprofits all over the country, and Wilderness Works is still my favorite group I have ever worked with my entire life. The intergrity of an organization is extremely important to me, and Wilderness Works has the highest level of integrity I've ever seen an organization run off of. They stay true to their mission statement and WOW what a mission statement it is!
I strongly encourage people who need some enrichment in their own lives to become a volunteer, the impact it made on my own life is incredible. The impact it makes on the kids is profound! I could go on and on about how amazing this place is, but you must see for yourself. Volunteer with Wilderness Works. Get to know the kids. Your life will change for the better too.

Tom T.

Donor

Rating: 5

I support Wilderness Works both financially and by volunteering my time, because I consistently can see for myself how it impacts the at-risk young men that it serves. These young men respond to the opportunities that Wilderness Works provides to build character and to experience the outdoors. I have to imagine that experiencing such opportunities allows these young men to develop into the responsible adults they are capable of being and greatly reduces the possibility that they would become involved with illicit drugs and crime.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Wilderness Works has a special place in my heart and the heart of my entire family. The work that this organization is doing is not new, it spans decades and has touched the lives of thousands of kids. My husband is a past recipient of all the good works that Wilderness Works does. It changed him, his outlook on life and his hope for the future as a young child in a difficult and impoverished environment.

We continue to be involved with Wilderness Works and believe strongly in the premise that expanding a child's view of the world can have a profoundly positive effect; one that offers hope and the desire to see more, do more and be more than they ever thought possible.

Board Member

Rating: 5

As a new supporter of Wilderness Works, I was immediately impressed with the impact being made in the lives of the most needy and at risk children in Atlanta. Staff and volunteers alike exhibit a deep love for children and are committed to providing much needed assistance for the children through several programs. I am proud to be associated with Wilderness Works and encourage everyone to consider how they can get involved - be it through financial support as a volunteer or both.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have been Volunteering with Wilderness Works since I was a Freshman in College in 2009. Over the last 4 years I have had the opportunity to work with these kids a number of times and see how they truly live for their time there. It is clear that these kids from frequently rough circumstances have not had the opportunities that anyone reading this likely has. Their socioeconomic circumstance does not permit them to. Wilderness Works is however a Gem of a program and a safe haven where these kids can be themselves and escape their circumstance to be with kids their own age and adults that clearly care to act as mentors and even informal guardians of them at events. I have never left my volunteer experience here without the hope to return as soon as my schedule may permit, and always hopeful that philanthropic funding would continue to persevere. Many of the kids who were attendees when I helped for the first time in 2009, are now volunteers themselves. Having volunteered throughout the GA region more than 900 hours in the last 4 years, Wilderness Works is still my favorite place to give my time, energy, and even money when I can scrape together some funds.

1

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I work at a non-profit on the west end and we partner with Wilderness Works during the school year as well as over the summer. They have such a great heart for the community they serve and for the kids who need the mentorship and resources that they help to provide. Their space is great for the neighborhood and it is a safe place for the kids to spend the weekend or enjoy overnight camps. Hard working staff with a heart for the community.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have been volunteering at Wilderness Works for 3 years now, and I'm always so excited to go back. The kids have the opportunity to have fun, while also learning teamwork, leadership, and social skills. The kids will never forget the experiences they have at Wilderness Works. They are appreciative of all the volunteers, and look up to them as role models. It's amazing hearing some of the kids' stories and it makes you want to help out more.

1

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Wilderness Works provides "once in a lifetime" experiences for at risk children and youth. The children continue to talk about these experiences several months after they have taken place! The children and youth are able to form strong bonds with the others at Wilderness Works particularly the wonderful mentors and counselors. Wilderness Works provides opportunities for the children and youth to learn leadership skills, life skills and how to build a strong community by recognizing and embracing the differences in others. Most importantly they encourage the children and youth to be their best and do their best so they can dream big and reach their full potential.

1

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Wilderness Works is a blessing to children living in underserved neighborhoods or shelters for the homeless in Atlanta. They offer opportunities that would otherwise be impossible for these children to experience – summer camps, sporting events, the opportunity to ride a bike and many other activities that most of us take for granted as a normal part of childhood. I see this organization as growing. There are lots of opportunities to volunteer and they are open to new ideas for activities, fund raising and publicity. If you like to see smiling children I would definitely recommend you get involved with Wilderness Works.

1

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Wilderness works is an amazing agency that is providing great experiences for Atlanta youth. The campus in Atlanta is a great old building that provides a place for the children to spend the night and engage in amazing games and outdoor activities. I have been involved with this agency for over a year and I am very excited with the direction its heading and the potential that I see.

1

Donor

Rating: 5

Wilderness Works is an excellent and resourceful agency that continues to go above and beyond to serve the Atlanta youth community. It provides many children with a support system and a sense of community that is sometimes lacking in their home life. Our organization is a proud supporter of everything that Wilderness Works provides and represents. Sometimes its the simplest opportunities that provide the biggest reward in these children's lives, we are so grateful to this agency for all of their hard work and determination!

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have been involved with Wilderness Works for at least 3 years. It is a great example of providing a variety experiential opportunities to homeless and/or needy children. During the school year Bill Mickler, the Director, organizes weekend meals, overnights, and activities provided by local businesses or service clubs. In the summer, the children are given the opportunity to attend week long camps in Georgia and North Carolina. Volunteers from local colleges are trained and provide additional assistance to Bill and the children as volunteers.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Wilderness Works and City Camp are fantastic! Children reuniting after weeks together at summer camp but this time its at City Camp. Lots of learning - lots of fun. My favorite is skit night! Hysterical and inspiring! Kids that don't have very many positive places to go can't wait until the next City Camp. They treat the volunteers very well. 5 Stars!!

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have been a volunteer for Wilderness Works for over 4years and I absolutely love it here. Seeing what this program has done and continues to do for these children by offering outdoor experiences and enriching activities ( things that they wouldn't normally get) throughout the year is so rewarding and I'm so excited to be a part of it. I've been fortunate to watch many of the children grow and change in such a positive way that I couldn't imagine not being a part of it.

1

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I have been involved with this organization for six plus years. This organization is very powerful and succeeds in reaching children in Atlanta that would never have an opportunity to experience summer camp and other outdoor wilderness experiences...wilderness works is partnered with many strong organizations that house the children and schools in the areas that teach these children. I have volunteered many many times and chaperoned on field trips and mentored many of the children. It is so critical I'm a child's life to experience camps, socialist with others, make new friends, and have an opportunity to know there is hope when many of these children live in dangerous areas and poor housing or shelters. Wilderness works is makin a huge difference in children's lives and I am fortunate to help them achieve this mission and see the huge smiles on these children's face!

1

Advisor

Rating: 5

Wilderness Works serves children who come from backgrounds of homelessness, foster care, and impoverished situations with amazing year round activities. In this capacity, children who would otherwise not have regular exposure to extra-curricular activities, have an outlet for recreation, culture, nature, as well as the chance to build friendships with other children in similar circumstances.

The team and volunteers of Wilderness Works dedicate many hours to engage children in a meaningful way which also includes wrap around support. Many children rely on Wilderness Works as a home away from home, a safe haven in the midst of their difficulties.

This organization has been a blessing to many children!