Let’s Go! Exploring family adventure therapy practices out-of-doors.

Let’s Go! Exploring family adventure therapy practices out-of-doors

Robert Coller, Kylie Peters, Anita Pryor

Session type: Regular forum session


This session provides an overview of the benefits and challenges of working therapeutically with families out-of-doors. Family & Systemic therapists Rob, Kylie and Anita will provide a brief overview of their combined lessons gleaned from providing bush adventure therapy, equine therapy and ‘walk and talk’ counselling out-of-doors over many decades. The presenters have found that when individuals or family members are invited into active therapy experiences out-of-doors, the benefits of indoor family therapy and systemic approaches are multiplied. A ‘Family Adventure Therapy’ practice framework will be shared, spanning: Safety, Shaping, Intentions, Nature-al consequences, Working with nature, Therapeutic relationship, Ecological awareness, and Flexibility. Through a systemic lens, this work could be called an eco-systemic approach. If you already work with families outdoors, or are interested in expanding your practice to include elements of Family Adventure Therapy, this session may interest you.

About the presenter/s

Rob Coller is a Clinical Family Therapist and Bush Adventure Therapist who utilises family systems theory, narrative therapy and values in action-based experiential learning. With over 35 years of experience in the fields of youth work, family therapy and bush adventure therapy, Robert has developed expertise and a unique focus for assisting youth who are ‘at risk’ and families in distress. Robert is also a Senior Therapeutic Clinician with Berry Street’s Take Two program supporting at risk young people placed in therapeutic residential care homes. Robert supports young people, their family and carers where appropriate in many settings, including home, schools and the outdoors.

Kyle Peters is a psychologist and family therapist. She believes in facilitating others to achieve their fullest potential and move forward to where they would like to be. She utilises a holistic strength-based approach to assist in developing skills and helping people find capabilities that they already had but couldn’t see. Kylie has worked in community mental health in rural and remote settings, both in family therapy and adolescent teams and also in the private practice setting. She has a very practical and applied approach to therapy. Kylie has over 10 years’ experience in Mental Health. She specialises in family therapy, eating disorders, trauma, acute care and equine therapy. Kylie also facilitates and trains practitioners in equine facilitated therapy and personal development across Australia.

Anita Pryor is an outdoor educator and family therapist. She applies person-centred, solution-focused and trauma-informed approaches, and draws on narrative therapy and motivational interviewing and in her work with children, young people and families. She has 30 years of experience designing and delivering outdoor experiences and BAT interventions, and in 2009 completed a PhD on Australian outdoor adventure interventions. As co-director of Adventure Works Australia, a charitable organisation providing BAT services, she currently coordinates 2 Tasmanian BAT services: Out Bush On Country (for young people in Out of home care) and Adventures 4 All (for people from all walks of life, including NDIS funded participants). She co-leads AABAT’s Outdoor Health Policy Unit, and is a clinical member and Tasmanian Representative of the Australian Association for Family Therapy (AAFT).