The Rite Journey is a unique educational program designed to support the development of self-aware, responsible and resilient adults. The program was originally designed by Andrew Lines, who saw the need to provide boys the opportunity to transition into manhood.
The Rite Journey reinvents the traditional process of a ‘Rite of Passage,’ which assists in transforming an adolescent from dependency to responsibility. This program has been developed so that both genders receive the instruction and support they need to become adults in the community.
In healthy societies, boys grow up in the company of caring men, who are present to guide them through the journey to manhood. Unfortunately, in today’s Western culture, many boys experience an absence of good, strong male role models. They tend to not step into responsible and respectful manhood until much later in life, if at all.
For girls, their sense of self is continually challenged by rapid and pervasive social and technological change with the onslaught of destructive messages from media and advertising. Striving for independence, they often turn to peers and popular culture for answers, potentially resulting in a lack of respect for oneself and others, poor decision making and unhealthy outcomes.
The Rite Journey is not a ‘one size fits all’ program. Here at Christian Outreach College Toowoomba we have the opportunity and autonomy to design a Rite Journey experience that caters specifically to our students.
At COCT the program runs for a full year with the commencement of Year 9 Camp. This is followed up throughout the year with smaller group discussions and workshops. The small groups are focused on same gender classrooms which allows for role modelling, less distraction and freer discussion.
The program includes the important concepts of CONSCIOUSNESS; the importance of raising a young person’s awareness of the issues that they might currently be facing, as well as the skills and understanding that are required to navigate their way through beginning adulthood, and CONNECTION; acknowledging the importance of relationship over role.
“Since beginning the Rite Journey program I have noticed my son’s level of maturity and consciousness has grown beyond his years. The program provides a forum to explore with his male classmates and peers many issues that are important to young men his age, but are very rarely addressed.” – Parent feedback
“The Rite Journey has proven to be a great coming of age experience for my daughter. Throughout Year 9 her questions and observations about life and people grew in frequency and depth. Initially I felt challenged by some of the questions she asked because it entailed a shifting away from our adult-child relationship and I had to meet her with greater seriousness. This of course is the point and the achievement of this program.
My daughter had the framework and support to help her move through the threshold of adolescence and beyond the ambiguities and awkward stances of not knowing who they are in relation to the world and the people in it. She developed an honesty and earnestness that placed her firmly as a human being to be reckoned with. It was a great experience for her and for us, her family, to see her mature throughout the year. The silence and inner anxieties which often accompany this awkward stage of development were left in the dust and so has a momentum and courage which give us great confidence in the years to come.” – Parent feedback
The Rite Journey also incorporates a Mentoring Program, which encourages ongoing development of self-awareness and builds strong, honest and respectful relationships with responsible adults in a different context.
The year-long program will conclude with a Welcome Home evening with students, their parents and mentors. This will be an opportunity for students to talk about their experiences and the things they’ve learnt over the year.
With Year 9 Camp starting next week we are excited to watch our students start their journey into adulthood.
Mr Michael Proellocks – Head of Pastoral Care