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Challenge Adventures Program Staff

George W. Appenzeller, MSW and Sarah L. Meadows, MSW founded  Challenge Adventures program in 1989. Both are licensed independent social workers, and bring more than 60 years of combined experience as therapists, teachers and leaders. They have been conducting unique adventure programs with vulnerable therapeutic populations for more than 25 years. Both have the advanced qualifications set by the USDA Forest Service. George and Sarah are married to each other and have five children and eight grandchildren. They train and supervise all staff and actively conduct many of the treks themselves.

George is excited about bringing younger or more fragile young people into the wilderness by using llamas as pack animals. He believes that these gentle animals help reach youth in a way other humans cannot. An experienced woodsman, tracker, and story-teller, George keeps campers interested in the natural world around them. When trekkers discover an animal track, George can usually identify it.

Sarah has a knack for identifying bird calls and teaches trekkers about the birds that they hear in the woods and she can locate hidden thickets of blueberries. When not on the trail, she enjoys gardening, travel and spinning llama wool. Find out more about what we're making with llama wool!

Other Staff.  All Challenge Adventure staff are mature people with experience working with the vulnerable populations we serve. Each member is either licensed as a social worker or psychotherapist or is working toward their degree and licensure. These highly qualified professionals go into the field to provide ongoing work with participants. All field staff have completed training on therapy approaches consistent with our treatment philosophy, particularly on the application of adventure and animal-assisted methods. In addition, all staff have training on trail and emergency procedures and are certified in Wilderness First Aid or more advanced emergency training levels.  Many of our field staff are volunteers. Challenge Adventures is always seeking additional volunteer staff who have these credentials.

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