The Get Outside with Community held another leadership camp recently on the beautiful Maria Island. The Leadership Camps aim to build the capacity and experience of the young leaders who co- run and organise the Get Outside short day trips throughout the warmer parts of the year. Its important for the building of the team and the growth of the leaders as individuals and as a team to go to an isolated place away from the city – it also helps if the reserve has a certain wow factor – Maria Island certainly fulfills this criteria. “You literally watch people fall in love with the place – its a very beautiful thing to watch and experience” said Jodie Epper the Get Outside Coordinator. “Over the three days the young people grow enormously in confidence and by day three they are leading activities by themselves including public speaking, safety briefings and┬ásports and cultural activities”.

This year we took 15 young people from both Launceston and Hobart to an island for three days. No phones, no TV, the first time to interact with a wombat and the first time climbing a mountain – something that a lot of Tasmanians are brought up with. This opportunity allows the space for leadership to grow, for confidence to grow and of course for friendships to grow. As a direct result of the leadership camps the young people are more able to run trips for there own communities enabling them also to get outside.

This year we were also graced with a resident poet (a partnership with ┬áthe Tasmanian Writers Center). Gina Mercer spent the three days with us mentoring and coaxing us to write about our connection to the island – and how that connection deepened over the three days. some of the writing coming out of this weekend leadership camp along with a couple of leaders will be presenting their work at the up coming Tasmanian Writers Festival – watch this space.


We climbed this mountain.

The painted cliffs are so beautiful.

We make this pledge and we intend to keep it.