The Operation Flinders Foundation provide a safe, satisfying, enjoyable, and fun experience for the young people who participate in the program, respecting the rights, privacy and individuality of all people who participate in the program. Throughout the exercise Operation Flinders will provide a healthy and safe work environment for staff, volunteers and participants.
The exercises involve participants walking a 100km circuit of the exercise area over a 8-day experience. The Operation Flinders exercises are held on Yankaninna Station in the far northern Flinders Ranges, approximately 585kms north of Adelaide and 50kms east of Leigh Creek. The country is classic to the Flinders Ranges terrain, which is the traditional land of the Adnyamathanha people. Both participants and adult leaders carry backpacks containing sleeping/camping equipment, personal items, water and a limited supply of food. Each day involves a cross-country hike to a designated night location (or stand). Each stand has limited facilities to support the team. It consists of trunks with sufficient rations for the team for dinner on the night of arrival, breakfast the next day and rations that are carried for lunch. A supply of water, camp equipment and cooking implements are located at these stands. Once the program commences, participants will be expected to complete it. There is no opportunity to ‘opt-out’, as students so often do so when faced with challenges in their daily lives.
All team members are taught basic bushcraft, map reading and navigation under the guidance of the team leader.
Team members are responsible for campsite cleanliness, cooking the meals, building the fire, and other duties required to maintain the camp area. Over the 8 days the team walks in a pre-determined route around the property to finish in the vicinity of where they first started. The distance of the daily walk varies, generally between 10-15km. Each team is issued with a teddy bear that represents the team mascot. Once the team has completed the program, on the final morning they are individually presented with a T-shirt and a set of dog tags. Individual awards may also be presented.
Through participation in the program, participants are also able to gain credit towards their South Australian Certificate of Education (SACE) under the banner of Recognition of Community Learning