New Get Outside Leaders are an Inspiration
In April, Get Outside held our annual leadership training weekend at the Far South Wilderness Camp. With Tasmania bathed in warm autumn light, we enjoyed the most amazing weekend exploring and learning. This year we hosted nine new leaders from across Tasmania, and were joined by three experienced leaders. Participants were diverse in their backgrounds, and included Afghan Hazara, Eritrean, Matu-chin, Chinese, and Nepali participants.
We started the weekend with a walk to Snug Falls, where our Discovery Rangers Emily Pressnell and Rob Armstrong demonstrated ways to lead a bushwalk, and make sure everyone is safe. We then embarked on a guided tour of Hastings Cave, and experienced a dark like no other. Participants played with the perfect acoustics, singing songs from home, which were beautiful and haunting.
The highlight of the camp was our climb of Hartz Peak. Glorious weather gifted endless views. The walk can be tough for the inexperienced, and it was a joy to see everyone work together to support and encourage each other. People practiced the skills of briefings, group management, safety and group well-being, and shared their plans to take their own families and communities out into Tasmania’s amazing places.
Two film-makes, Jobi Starick and Ginger Rankin from BigHart, merged with the group, capturing stunning footage of the Tasmanian wilderness, and capturing the essence of the programme – connection to place. Hearing participants talk about the benefits of being outside, and their connections and confidence, makes us again reflect on the impacts of this programme.
As one participant said,
It made me reflect a lot about where I came from and how this place, what Tasmania meant to me, because Tasmania is a bit like home and because of the nature it connects back so much.
And another speaking of the challenge of the Hartz Mountains;
I felt, like I was saying, “I don’t want to do it, it’s so hard, I don’t want to do it” – like that. But after I did it I feel amazing. And I said like “Yeah that’s a good thing. Let me do it again and get more knowledge and experience. It makes me feel happy and proud and yeah, I feel like I did something really good, and I will never forget”.
The programme seeks to empower young people, giving them the skills and confidence to lead walks within their family or friendship circles. It is great to see people step up to this role, and challenge themselves to become leaders.
When I get more knowledge and experience I would love to take my family and other people from my community because all the people in my community they don’t have the opportunity and always like, for example woman, they always stay at home. They don’t go outside, to enjoy. They don’t want to do it because they think it’s hard. So I really want, if I get more knowledge and experience, I would love to take them as a leader and get them to enjoy. Tasmania is a beautiful place.