The Tasmanian Men’s Gathering (TMG) is a yearly event for up to 80 men held in late summer at a camping and bunkhouse-style outdoor venue. The Gathering brings together men from a wide range of backgrounds and life experience. It creates themes and constructs activities with the purpose of allowing men to find real connection, support and self-knowledge. Men move between large and small groups that go from wider explorations of life’s struggles and successes to individual interactions where real communication happens. There is food, music and art and the amazing feeling that these men will not only accept, acknowledge and appreciate you, but will open their lives for you.
This year’s gathering will be at Camp Woodfield, a scenic, self-contained facility surrounded by bushland just a half-hour north of Hobart. Participants have a choice of staying in bunkhouses or bringing their own camping gear or caravan. Three meals a day are provided by a professional caterer and a team of volunteers. A large teepee is erected to hold the main group functions and activities. This year’s theme is “Dancing with Fire,” a phrase meant to evoke energy, power, wisdom and skill.
Many of the Gathering’s participants and most of its organisers have been been to multiple TMGs over its 20-year history and/or have men’s work, health or counselling experience. The Gatherings are developed and run by these men who have gotten so much out of their experience at these events. They return year after year to create new content, manage the logistics, monitor the health and safety of participants and staff the kitchen and dining facilities.
Several times over the course of the long weekend the large group disperses into small groups. These are led by trained and seasoned participants to ensure the safety and confidentiality of discussions and that everyone is heard. Many participants find these groups to be the most rewarding part of the TMG.
But above all, Tasmanian Men’s Gatherings are about having a great time, finding our joyful and creative sides and making connections that will last a lifetime. No Gathering is complete without music, entertainment and laughter. Sunday night is given over to creative contributions from anyone and everyone who might feel the spark. We won’t tell you that this is a life-changing weekend. But if you want change in your life, or a way to make it richer, there is hardly a better place to make it happen.
To find out more or to register your place, go to the Tasmen website.