The 2018 Adventure Therapy Aotearoa Forum was held on 25-27th May 2018!  We were lucky to be hosted by the awesome team at Whenua-iti Outdoors in Tasman.  As per the Tasman districts reputation we were treated with awesome blue skies and beautiful views of snowy mountains all weekend.  Thanks again to the team at WIO for being fabulous hosts!

The weekend consisted of 105 awesome Adventure Therapy practitioners from around the country coming together to connect, learn and inspire each other in the work that we do – using outdoor, experiential and nature based therapeutic interventions.  The feedback consistently highlighted that the best bit was the opportunities everyone had to connect with others who have a similar approach to their work.

We had the privilege of having 2 awesome international guest speakers  – Dr Mike Gass from University of New Hampshire, USA shared a keynote address and two workshops with us.  Dr Mike Gass has been in the field of adventure therapy for many years and is author of the text book ‘Adventure Therapy: Theory, Research and Practice’.  He is also co-author of the book ‘Effective Leadership in Adventure Programming’ along with Simon Priest.  Dr Anita Pryor from Adventure Works, Australia  also shared a key note address with us, sharing her awesome wisdom as a south pacific adventure therapy practitioner and researcher.

We had many other brilliant kiwi presenters running workshops – thanks Mike Elkington, Lara Hania, Amy Horn, Claire Wyatt, Carolyn Lotawa, Wendy Van den Berg, Dan Eastwood, Reon Nolan, Helen Jeffery, James Alker and Lee-Anne Jago.  The only complaint we had was that there were too many good workshops to choose from!

A big thank you to the organizing team, and everyone who helped out.  Most of all thank you to all of those who came and sorry to all of you who missed out this year.  Keep your eyes peeled for next years conference… rumor has it we’re heading to the North Island!


Anita’s final keynote

Mike Elkington leading the blessing on Mike Gass and Anita’s Pounamu

The full group (well mostly!)

Mike Gass – Creating functional change workshop

Saturday night dinner at Riverside Community

Here’s to new friends!

Tent Village – it’s hard to see the ice on the tents from this photo – but it was there!

Awesome braziers to keep us warm and keep the vibes happy

Mike Gass – Metaphor workshop

Amy Horn – What is Adventure Therapy workshop

The best dining room ever 🙂

Mike Elkington leading some mau rakau early in the morning.

Waka Abel Tasman lead an afternoon activity – Thanks Lee-Anne!

Early Sunrise Canoe paddle – only for the brave hearted – it was chilly!! Thanks James and Wilderness Canoe Trust!