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Our Philosophy

The mission at Maine Outdoor Kids is to promote youth development through enriching outdoor adventure programming that is accessible to all. Our programs encourage healthy emotional and social development for both youth and staff. We offer year-round 100% outdoor day programming prioritizing unstructured outdoor play, environmental education, wilderness skills and outdoor recreation. 


Our goal is to help create a community of young people with a deep connection to nature, a strong sense of self and respect for others.

Our Story

In Summer 2014, Effie created what was referred to as "Effie Camp," a collection of kids she'd cared for as a way to meet multiple family's summer child care needs. This adventure-based nanny-share occasionally made an appearance during the later summers she was in Maine. At “camp” Effie observed not only how happy the children were when they spent a lot of time outside exploring, but also how confidently they grew into themselves. We believe children need enriching outdoor experiences and exploration that support social and spiritual growth, especially during times of change. Through the support and encouragement of a group of parents, and identifying the need for more outdoor-based programs for Portland-area youth, Maine Outdoor Kids was born. 

Maine Outdoor Kids has grown since it was established in 2021. Effie and Lucia make up the leadership team with help from seasonal staff. Part of what makes Maine Outdoor Kids' programs so unique is our team's ability to engage and build strong, trusting connections with all participants. With small groups and ratios, our staff is able to use their intuition and experience to ensure each child has the space to develop into their very best selves. 

Have Questions? Check out our FAQ page. 



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