The Intersectionality of Grief Work and Adventure Therapy

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Grief and loss is ever present in the counselling work we do. We can usually link any presenting issue back to a significant loss in some way, such as loss of a relationship, job, way of life, or a death. At Confluence Counselling we work with rural and northern Indigenous communities that experience losses at higher rates due in part to poor social determinants of health factors, increased rates of death by suicide, and transgenerational grief from residential school, day school, 60s Scoop, and the child welfare system. We use adventure therapy to address grief and promote healing relying on the significant intersectionality that already exists between grief literature and activities and the field of adventure therapy. During this talk I will share further about our work, provide activity examples, and invite discussion on the role of adventure therapy within grief work.


Lynette Nikkell, Confluence Counselling

Lynette is the founder and owner of Confluence Counselling. She is a registered clinical social worker with extensive experience in the areas of child protection and addictions services. Lynette has practiced and volunteered at leading national and international adventure therapy organizations. Her award-winning research has been presented locally and abroad.

Will Dobud, Charles Sturt University

Will Dobud has worked predominately with adolescents in the private and public sector. Coming to Australia from the United States in 2009, Will built True North Expeditions, a non-profit program in Adelaide, SA, providing adventure therapy experiences and social work services for adolescents from all over the country. In 2015, Will was awarded the Australian Postgraduate Award for research promise and conducted his PhD focusing on client experiences in outdoor therapy. Will’s ongoing research and publications focuses on participant experiences of care in a variety of settings and exploring what works to deliver more effective social work services. Will is particularly interested in Feedback-Informed Treatment, the Outdoor Therapies, and Solution-Focused Brief Therapy – basically asking the questions, how can we get routinely better at delivering better outcomes for those who seek our counsel.

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6 September 2022
8:00 am - 9:00 am AEST
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