Calling all fathers and sons

As teenage boy’s break down the old reality of their formative years, they release a new energy that has to negotiate many different pressures. In many cultures boys have a community rites of passage process that offers a language for talking about transition, but curiously in the West young boys are largely left on their own to find their way through a bewildering range of choices as they slowly step towards manhood. The Pathways programme creates the experience and a context that permits a re-definition of the relationship between the boy and older men

The Pathways programme also strengthens and deepens the bond between father and son – and the whole family. This happens through processes that affirm and honour the emerging young man as he moves into manhood – with his father present and acknowledging the transition into a new and different relationship. While there is a perception that the programme is for the transition for the boy, it’s equally for the transition of the father into a new phase of fathering and ‘letting go’. The community of men facilitate a trusting and supportive space that guides and nurtures this powerful journey and it celebrates the new relationships between the young men and their fathers/significant older men, who attend with them.

Here’s what fathers and sons say about the programme:

“When I first heard about Pathways I thought I haven’t really got time to spend a whole week away, but a week later I realised I’d had one of the most profound weeks of my fatherhood. ” (father)

“My son went to Pathways somewhat uncertainly, but when he stepped forward as a young man to honestly and quietly speak his truth, it rocked my world.” (father)

“I really valued the structure of the question and answer session that gave me and my son a voice on issues that are difficult to language and rarely spoken about.” (father)

“Where in your life can you spend 5 days and five nights alone with your son? It’s something rarely available in our busy lives. It’s possible that I might have looked back with some sadness at how I didn’t really hear what he was saying.” (father)

“Post Pathways I could sense the difference in him – more confident with longer fuller communication with me. The invisible bond between us had strengthened. I was surprised how powerful and emotional the new bond was for me.” (mentor)

“It leveled the assumption that I had the power as his father, by skilfully giving my son a platform to embrace his embrace his manhood.” (father)

“Made some cool friends and it gave me a lot more confidence.” (young man)

“Hearing him speak his truth was hugely revealing. I really listened. There is so much background noise in our lives I really didn’t hear him.” (father)”

“What I really felt was the reassurance around the quality of my parenting. It was a reminder that a great men’s culture is really accessible.” (father)

“I realised that my son had seen a lot of my authoritative side rather than my affectionate side.” (father)

“I was arguably one of the most powerful and profound experiences of my life, up there with my wedding day and the day of my son’s birth.” (father)

“I’m trusting that my son will speak to me as a man and that I’ll let go of my level of control and worry.”

“It was a shock to realise that in our day to day lives, most of our conversations are around domestic detail, rather than genuine meaningful communication.” (father)

‘”My relationship with my father got stronger. I hardly ever talked before (he’s my parent, pays bills, looks after me…) but now I see him as someone I can talk to.” (young man)

“I came here so my son doesn’t have to spend his whole life figuring out how to be authentic. That’s the gift in bringing him here.” (father)

“Everything worked beautifully – well balanced in a culture of openness and trust.” (mentor)

Register Now for The Next Course

The next course is on April 7th – 12th, 2015. Places on the course are limited and so you are advised to register early:

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