our impact


Over the course of almost two decades, the program has supported hundreds of youth to transform their lives.

At Take a Hike, students go through a process of gaining self-understanding, and come to see the need for personal change. This leads to incredible growth:


Students are re-engaged in school and community. Most students double their pre-program school attendance levels, and students spend 60 hours per year volunteering at a local organization.

Academic Success

On average, 88% of Take a Hike students graduate from high school. In 2018 the number was as high as 97%, and in 2017 it was 92%, compared with provincial graduation rates of 84%.


Students develop social and emotional skills, and improve physical and mental well-being. This supports youth to overcome barriers and become resilient individuals who can navigate the challenges of young adulthood.

Our alumni success stories show the lasting impact of these skills and experiences well beyond graduation.




Take a Hike started in Vancouver in 2000, and over the course of nearly two decades the program has helped hundreds of students transform their lives.

Because of our students' success, we set an ambitious ten-year vision of scaling this proven and successful approach to alternate education so every school district in British Columbia with a need, desire and capacity can access the program. Find out more about our scaling strategy here.

 Take a Hike Foundation works in partnership with local school districts and communities to offer the program. School districts provide everything they would normally provide for an alternate program and the Foundation layers in elements beyond what can be provided by the public education system. Communities build awareness, provide volunteers essential to program operations, and raise funds on a best-effort basis. Find out more about the new program development process here.

Ready to get started?

Contact us at expansion@takeahikefoundation.org


our people


Leadership Team


Gordon Matchett

Gordon began working with Take a Hike in early 2016. His own experience in adventure based learning helped him develop many of the skills that have helped him to be resilient and thrive in life and led him to pursue a degree in Outdoor Recreation, and later an MBA.


Cindy Fors
Director of Finance

Cindy joined Take a Hike in 2017. Holding a Chartered Professional Accountant (Chartered Accountant) designation, Cindy brings high level financial expertise to the Take a Hike Foundation.


Pete Prediger
Director of Operations

Pete joined the Take a Hike program in September 2006. Pete focused on therapy with children and youth in his studies, and truly believes in the power of combining therapy with the outdoors to build relationships with youth.


Virginia Chomley
Director of Communications

Virginia joined Take a Hike in September 2016. Virginia studied a Bachelor of Communication and practiced marketing for ten years before completing a Masters degree in psychology.


Fundraising Team


Deb Abma-Sluggett
Director of Philanthropy
and Government Relations

Deb joined the newly formed Foundation staff in 2016. One of Deb’s main goals is to build a community network comprised of like-minded individuals from the corporate and community sectors who believe in supporting youth.


Karen Waldal
Community Engagement Manager
West Kootenays

Joining the Foundation in October 2016, Karen believes the key to empowering others is to help them build personal support networks.



Board of Directors

Phil Cotterill
Past Chair

Head of Client Solutions Team
Connor, Clark & Lunn Investment Management

Nicole Geyer

Community Leader / Marketing Advisor

Paula Rogers
Vice Chair & Treasurer

Director & Audit Committee Chair

Alio Gold Inc. and Diversified Royalty Corp.

Drew Collier

President, Corporate Services
LGM Financial Services

Brent Cameron

Managing Partner

Steve Fast

Vice President, IT Client Services

Matthew Coyne

Vice President, Marketing & Sales
Cantrav Services Inc.

Pat Jacobsen Director

Corporate Director


Wendy Bach

Project Lead, Coaching & Mentoring Program

Methanex Corporation

Clayton Buckingham

Senior Vice President and CFO


Anne Donohoe

Chief Marketing Officer


John Montalbano
Advisor to the Board


Tower Beach Capital