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It feels good to BKIND. That's why we're weaving in kind all over the place. So pull on a pair of Bonds and feel comfy knowing you're supporting a brand with its heart - and its stitching - in the right place.

It feels good to BKIND. That's why we're weaving in kind all over the place. We’re doing this for our products, the planet, the community, and the people in them. After all, kindness isn't something you should half arse, you have to whole arse it. So pull on a pair of Bonds and feel comfy knowing you're supporting a brand with its heart - and its stitching - in the right place.

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Bonds x Reach: Alice Springs, NT

Community
By The Bonds Team

Last year we joined forces with Reach to help empower and inspire young people to find their voice and own it, rolling out secondary school workshops and regional programs across the country.

These programs aim to break down the barriers held by young people in our communities, encourage them to connect with one another and get talking about the issues they’re facing.

Each year, Reach heads out to rural communities to bring their team face-to-face with young people and run workshops in hubs, community spaces and schools. It’s all about pushing comfort zones, chatting about life, and giving them tools to help tackle the different challenges they face.

This year, we sent along a couple of GoPros with their Alice Springs INC crew to capture the true vibe and value of their workshops – a view most adults never get to see.

Step inside the Reach Alice Springs, NT Workshop…

Episode 1

Episode 2

Wondering whose heads we strapped GoPros to? Meet Reach Crew members, Dan and Alishia who graciously let us walk a mile in their shoes.

What’s Up Dan Reid

Q: Tell us a bit about how you got involved with Reach.

In year 11 (2013), a workshop was run at my school, and after being a smart-arse to the facilitator and trying to sabotage the session, I began to pay attention and hear people in my year speak honestly about their lives. I learned things about people I never would have expected. After the workshop the facilitator asked me and a friend to hang back, and he told me he wanted to me to come along to another workshop, which ended up being Reach’s recruitment day - I got through and have been around ever since!

Q: How did the INC Reach Crew team come about?

Reach has been working in Alice Springs and other Indigenous communities for years. In the last few years it has become more of a focus point and so a team to specialize in this area was put together.

Q: What was involved with this particular NT workshop?

Each workshop was focused on a different thing, but the overall aim of the workshops are around connection (to self and others), vulnerability and celebrating all parts of ourselves.

Q: What do you hope to achieve when you head out to a regional/rural workshop?

For me the aim is to impact a group, to help the young people learn the tools to support one another, create a culture where it’s okay to ask for help and explore who they are. But beyond that, if our workshops can have enough of an impact, that class or year group will set the tone for future year groups, and we have already seen this shift in some of the lower year levels.

Q: What’s the most rewarding part of being involved with these programs?

Seeing the young people who have a reputation for being aggressive or “disengaged” leave being the hero of the workshop and supporting the quiet people.

Q: What are some of the challenges young people face in these regional/rural areas that young people in metropolitan areas may not have to deal with?

I don’t think they are all unique problems necessarily but just similar themes much higher on the spectrum. Loneliness, poor mental health, the fear of judgement, bullying and not having the tools to cope with life’s challenges. However, suicide, parent(s) in prison or not around, drug use and violence have been much more prevalent in INC workshops compared to metro areas.

Q: If you could give your teenage self some advice, what would it be?

Probably just to not fear leadership, and to fully step into it.

Let’s Chat Alishia Francis

Q: Tell us a bit about how you got involved with Reach.

I first got involved with Reach at the end of year 2014, I had just had a huge friendship break down at school and I was about to go into year 12, at the time it felt like my whole world was falling apart. Reach came into my life at a super interesting time, I was really questioning my place in the world and who I was and seeing a random Facebook video pop up from Reach who were looking for crew to join them, really changed things up for me.

Q: Can you tell us a bit more about these particular workshops in the Northern Territory?

A lot of what was involved in the most current Alice Springs workshops was activities centered around connection, play, storytelling and challenge. We use a lot of non-verbal activities to get the young people participating without having to be in the spotlight or feel heaps of pressure. We play and have fun with them because a lot of the time their lives and the world around them is pretty intense and hectic, and we want to create a space where they can do and be anything; play is also such a great way to connect with people.

Q: What do you hope to achieve with young people in these workshops?

When we go out on our regional workshops we hope to start a conversation with our participants, being the support they need, the friendly face and sometimes even the person who challenges them.

Q: What’s the most rewarding part of being involved with these programs?

The most rewarding part is seeing the young people grow up, seeing the changes in them from first stepping into our workshops a couple years ago to now is beautiful, and I feel incredibly privileged to be a part of their lives and have them share their stories with me.

Q: What are some of the challenges young people face in these regional/rural areas that young people in metropolitan areas may not have to deal with?

There’s a higher prevalence of drug and alcohol abuse, domestic violence and suicide rates in these communities but the lack of recourses is probably the biggest challenge young people in regional and rural areas face, with teachers and youth professionals being spread thin, and community leaders facing so many different challenges every day, it’s hard to make sure that everyone is looked after and cared for.

Q: If you could give your teenage self some advice, what would it be?

It’s okay to mess up and ruffle some feathers along the way, as long as you’re being true to who you are.

Want to know more about our partnership with Reach? Read our Bonds x Reach blog post.

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