Take the journey

The Journey to Manhood a community based program for boys of high school age transitioning into manhood.

On the four-day camp, lads are invited to participate in activities, circles and challenges with men from the community, and invited to consider their future, the man they are becoming and the contribution they can make to their family, peers and the wider world.

The camp is about them seeing themselves as an active participant in their choices and their future.

Often the lads are accompanied and supported on camp by their father or other significant men in their life.

A guided transition

The camp offers a safe space in which boys and their accompanying men can learn through their experiences at the camp, as well as stories shared by other parents, boys and men of the community.

The intention is to create a supportive environment where boys connect with and are held by both the men in their life, and a greater community of men.

Through this, they are consciously supported through a healthy and safe transition to leave the boy behind, be guided in growing up emotionally and make the first steps to becoming a young man.

Working together

Out in the bush of the beautiful Gleniffer valley, the program will see the young men and men
  • Share and listen to one another and their stories
  • Be encouraged or even challenged on their journey

  • Join activities to build emotional and personal growth
  • Build relationship and connection

  • Ask questions in a safe and sharing environment

  • Honour one another

  • Hang out and have lots of fun

The invitation

The camp is open to boys of high school age.

Alongside them are invited the men in their life, particularly fathers or other male role models, to grow new levels of relationship, dialogue and connection within their family.

Boys and families may come to the camp wanting to work on specific issues or challenges being faced in the transition into young manhood. Others may just feel the need for extra support and guidance from experienced men during this time.

All are welcome, the camp is a fully inclusive space.

The foundation of the camp is support of a young man to transition into manhood, alongside the men in his life & the men of the community

Gifts of the journey

Over the four days, through the work of connection and challenge, the journey offers many gifts.

This full immersion experience makes a profound difference in the lives of the boys and their families.

From their time at the camp, many of the boys

  • Come to understand what it means to be a healthy young man in today’s world

  • Discover their own inner confidence, strengths and unique talents

  • Develop stronger, supportive relationships with their fathers and other men

  • Connect with the feminine and learn respectful relationship with their mothers, other women and girls

  • Grow a sense of personal responsibility and emotional resilience

  • Begin to build healthy and authentic relationships with themselves, their peers, their families and their community

  • Improve their overall well-being and grounding in themselves

Community facilitation

The Journey is truly a community driven initiative.

The camps are held by men and women from the wider Bellingen community, with a passion for programs that grow and support young people. They help with everything from planning and logistics, to facilitation.

Some of these are fathers and mothers of participants from previous camps, some are previous youth participants themselves. All have seen the transformation and impact the camp has on boys and their families.

The key facilitators who hold the foundation of the program are men with significant experience in youth rite of passage and youth development programs.

Community supporters
  • Bellingen Mentor Group

  • Men of Bellingen

  • Y2A

Gathering for women

The camp honours and values the role of women in young men’s lives.

The women of the community are very much part of the camp’s vision and planning, even though they do not attend.

Gathering for support

Women of the community, as well as mothers of previous youth participants, gather in the lead up to and during the camp to support the mothers and women in the life of the young men.

The camp can have a significant impact on young men – altering their direction in life or the way they behave. Coming together with other women can help preparation for possible ripples of change in family dynamics and help you support the changes going on for your young man.

Ceremonies of departure & return

The camp departure day and homecoming are important elements of the young men’s experience of transition. Women whose young men attending camp are warmly invited to be part of the gatherings on these days.

Homecoming is part of the final day of the camp when young men and accompanying men return.

This is a time of celebration and extended family and people important to your boy are encouraged to attend, to welcome and honour their returning young men.

Camp fees

Costs only

As a not-for-profit run by volunteers, the camp fees are low and worked out to only to cover costs.

Fees cover food, a cook, materials, site fees and incidentals.

Low camp fee

For the young men and their accompanying men the fee is between $250 – $350 each.

Local community men attending to support will also pay a nominal fee to cover food and site costs.

For community

Any funds left over are put towards participants who may require scholarships or subsidies.

Facilitators and supporters do not get paid.

Learn more

To learn more about upcoming camps, please register on the link to the right, and one of the facilitators will contact you.

Camp Registrations

Registrations for the 2023 Journey to Manhood camp are now open!

(13th – 16th April 2023) 

Click on the link below, register your details and you will contacted closer to the date.

Register for the 2023 Journey 2 Manhood Camp.