We are more than happy to answer your questions, but here are some common questions:

  • Where are we meeting? 

Our programs move around the Ventura River Watershed, Ventura and Ojai wild places. If you didn’t receive an email from your program Lead Staff, contact Heather King at hking68@gmail.com.

  • What should my child bring / wear?

Please make sure everything fits into their backpack and they can carry it with snack and water bottle inside, and do not send anything extra. 

WEAR EACH DAY:

  1. day pack that everything fits into
  2. sunscreen (one coat already applied) and/or hat
  3. light long pants 
  4. t-shirt
  5. light button down long sleeve shirt that can get dirty
  6. old sneakers or closed-toed hiking sandals – NO FLIP FLOPS
  7. full water bottles – at least 1/2 liter total
  8. healthy snacks – please minimize single use wrappers/potential litter!
  9. DO NOT SEND toys, cell phones, games or gadgets

We suggest a towel, change of clothes, and extra shoes in the pick-up car

  • What if it looks like rain? 

We love to play in the rain! Wet days are more fun when everyone comes prepared. If there is a chance of rain, or it has been raining, please send your children with:

     11. Rain boots

     12. Poncho or rain jacket

     13. Warm jacket/sweater (under waterproof layer)

     14. Warm socks – preferably wool if a cold rain. 

     15. A change of clothes in a separate plastic bag is helpful but not required. Can be in pick-up car instead. Ventura Wild often means muddy and wet kids…sometimes WAY muddy and wet. Please welcome them prepared and with time to accommodate them in your car, and they will be very happy kids!

  • What if the weather is extreme? 

We typically enjoy whatever weather comes our way, but sometimes conditions are not safe for one reason or another and we need to cancel. We will let you know by noon on the day of the program. If that is too late for your logistical needs, please let us know, or contact Lead Staff for updates about potential cancellation.

  • What about snakes, ticks, mountain lions and other wild creatures? 

During our programs we teach the kids nature awareness and make agreements to respect and give space to wild creatures of all kinds. We do tick checks regularly, and we learn to keep our eyes open and our feet and hands in view. Usually large groups of kids send wildlife scampering for hiding. 

  • Is Ventura Wild a non-profit? 

The answer is currently “no”. We would like to be! But currently we are employees of the Ojai Recreation Department since 2014. This enables us to be covered by their liability insurance, use the city vans, and get listed in the Recreation Activity Guide. Before that we were a program of Oak Grove School since 2009.

What happens in a day of Ventura WIld? 

Generally we cycle through awareness, knowledge, skills and stewardship using council sharing and stories, sensory awareness games, traditional skills, alone reflection time and gratitude. Never do we get to everything we plan. Days are child centered and place based. We focus on the moment, not the goal, and we direct the group to find inspiration and curiosity in ways that are fun and meaningful to each person. We do lots of digging holes, splashing in water, and playing with sticks and stones. Strangely the children learn so much! 

DAILY AGENDA EXAMPLE:  

  1. Sign-in, get the wiggles out, find your secret spot.
  2. Gather and share with the group – Story of the Day
  3. Explore, wander, discover a mystery
  4. Ask questions, find answers, find stories and practice skills
  5. Create and reflect
  6. Gather and share with the group – Story of the Day