Amirel Lachish with his son Aytan
Amirel Lachish with his son Aytan

Father apprehensive about “new age hippieness”

BRUNSWICK Heads father Amirel Lachish said that despite hearing positive feedback about the Raising Men program, he did admit to harbouring a few reservations.

"Even though I was open-minded, I was a still a bit apprehensive regarding the potential "new age hippieness" of the whole thing," he said. "I was happy to find out the opposite - it was a very down-to-earth, intelligent, practical and heart-warming experience."

Presented by Mullumbimby's The Australian Rites of Passage Institute (TARPI), the three-day bush camp is designed to help fathers support their teenage sons "transition to manhood".

"Even though I have had a good relationship with my son Aytan before the camp, I can clearly see a great improvement in all aspects of our relationship," Mr Lachish said.

"While we still have a father/son relationship, we have crossed over and stepped in a very distinctive manner into a man-to-man relationship."

Fifteen-year-old Aytan said the "very trusting, good relationship" he had with his father before has now evolved into one of greater understanding.

"What stood out to me was that the key to happiness is doing what you love to do and that absolute honesty is the best way to sustain a healthy relationship," he said.

TARPI CEO and author of The Making of Men Dr Arne Rubinstein said the process behind the purpose-built bush camp used the traditional "story, challenge, honour" framework "to help boys prepare for life as a healthy young man".

"There are no phones, iPads, computers or distractions," said Dr Rubinstein, who was nominated for Australian of the Year in 2008 for his work. "The time spent together is of the highest quality."

The next Raising Men camp is being held in Mullumbimby between June 13 and 16. To enquire, call 02 8003 3610.


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