Crossing the threshold

Spring 2017
Gabby Hollis

I have been involved with Tides since 2005. I work with up to 27 new teenage girls and their families every year. I also work with the same number of returning young women, some of which have grown through the programme, and their teens, becoming strong adult facilitators themselves. It is a privilege to see young people open their eyes to their own longing and watch whole families embrace each other within the honesty of their own imperfections. It’s from this place that I see empowered young women, healthy families and supportive communities emerge.


Young people today face one of the most exciting and challenging times of their life – building an independent identity, while moving into the wider world of possible risk and danger. Their physical and mental health depends on the availability of a community that is willing to help navigate the inner and outer changes of the adolescent terrain. Rites of passage can help young people build the confidence they need to make positive life choices.They can also contribute to adolescents finding a sense of belonging, forming strong bonds with multiple generations along the way.

First Paragraph

Tides has been running since 2004 and is a ‘sister’ programme to Tracks (Rites of Passage for teenage boys). The early programmes evolved out of men’s and women’s gatherings that had been happening regularly at Tui Community (an intentional residential community at Golden Bay, South Island) for 18 years.