Alice Springs - Father and Son

“It’s not time to make a change, Just relax, take it easy. you’re still young, that’s your fault, There’s so much you have to know.”

Cat Stevens said it well in his song Father and Son, and his ideas remain current, even after 35 years. His lyrics tell us of the divide that can develop between young and old, and we know this can start early. Our Pilgrimage of Hope to Alice Springs is a unique opportunity to work with your son in an educational and service environment.

Years 8 and 9 mark the time when the young start to look for adult role models beyond the simplistic hero worship of earlier days. As teens, young people can experience a period where conflict is their central theme. They often reject the expectations, values and directions their elders have embraced, placing them regularly at odds with each other. It’s also a time where they look for direction.

Our program will include some significant activities in which sons/daughters and fathers/mothers will take turns in exercising some mentoring or leadership for each other. We’ll have some structured conversation time, and, of course, some time just to relax. This is an opportunity to build connections and create good memories for both of you. As a parent, Cat sings: “I was once like you are now, and I know that it’s not easy.”

Participating Schools

We may never wish to trade our lifestyle, community and particular ways of believing for any other in the world. That does not mean that we will not be enriched by experiences that take us beyond the comfort of our own existence. The Pilgrimage to Yipirinya School will be an enriching experience. Our schools have a common commitment to love our neighbours, wherever they may be. By sharing time, prayer and daily activities, we will break down the barriers that divide our world and, in the process, become bearers of the one Word and the one Light. As one body we wish you well and assure you of our prayers.
The 2012 Pilgrimage of Hope to Alice Springs includes:

  • An amazing trip to Mparntwe (Alice Springs) the red centre of Australia.
  • Eight days camping at Yipirinya School (all equipment provided)
  • Intensive involvement in the life of the school
  • Visits to communities and cultural excursions
  • A three-day bus camping trip to Uluru (Ayers Rock) and Watarrka (Kings Canyon)
  • Experience of the desert country from an indigenous (not tourist) perspective

We’ll take you to some amazing places in Central Australia. We’ll spend time camping (gear will be supplied) and you’ll have the opportunity to get to know one another through some structured activities. You will also have the chance to relax, meet others in the same situation, and have some quality time together.


This year we embark on our fifth Pilgrimage of Hope to Alice Springs.
The focus is on service to others and the expectation that the Pilgrims will gain much from this “experience of a lifetime”.

Yipirinya School is one of the few genuinely independent Aboriginal schools in Australia. It is controlled by an Indigenous Council and caters for students from the town camps of Alice Springs and outlying bush communities. It is a family, co-educational school with a child care centre, a pre-school, primary school, and a growing secondary section.

Yipirinya means Caterpillar and the school’s ethos has its genesis in the Caterpillar dreamtime of the Arrernte people. The school has a two-way bi-lingual and bi-cultural approach to education. It teaches four indigenous languages and their culture and it also follows the Northern Territory curriculum, concentrating on literacy and numeracy.

The students at Yipirinya School come from very disadvantaged backgrounds, where poverty, neglect and abuse are common. As ESL students, they also struggle to achieve basic levels of literacy and numeracy.

Our intention is to assist the students of Yipirinya School in their learning. We hope to gain an appreciation of Aboriginal culture, spirituality, and connection with the land. We want to undertand the conditions in which people live and the issues they face so that, in considering their needs, we come to know ourselves better. In a world where family is all-important, we aim to enrich our own parent/sibling relationships. We travel lightly and humbly, not so much lugging our own knowledge as to listen and learn.

A Pilgrimage with A Difference

On ....... the Pilgrimage will depart from Perth for Alice Springs, returning on ........

A detailed itinerary will be issued to all participants prior to departure.

The cost for the 2012 Pilgrimage of Hope to Alice Springs will be approximately $1,996.00. per pilgrim
This includes:

  • All airfares, taxes, transfers and bus fares
  • Travel insurance & comprehensive medical insurance
  • Most tourist and sightseeing activities
  • All accommodation, meals & camping equipment
  • Official group uniform
  • Official Pilgrimage of Hope Badge
  • DVD of Pilgrimage

Places are limited to 40 students (from Years 8 & 9 in 2012), parents and staff.
Please complete the application form and return to your school contact person as soon as possible.
For more information, please register a 'New Account' to access the Pilgrimage of Hope internal website
Please note that the ...... is: ...... - .......
Please click on below to download a copy of the information night flyer