Men’s Programs

Common Ground is our renowned 9-week facilitated men’s program

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Mens Wellbeing ‘flagship’ program is Common Ground.

Common Ground is a 9-week facilitated course that offers a powerful way for men to explore in a group setting, their challenges and have the conversations that they need to have – in a supported and non-judgemental way.

There are profound benefits when men have the space and time to discuss the things that matter to them, with other men.

Common Ground groups provide a safe, non-confronting atmosphere that supports your personal growth and raises awareness. Common Ground offers an opportunity for men to gain new perspectives on issues and on life, with other caring and informed men.

Common Ground Program

Your Common Ground Facilitators

Common Ground Facilitators are men from our community with extensive experience in men’s work.

All Common Ground Facilitators have all attended Common Ground program themselves, so they know what it’s like to be in the program.

Usually a Common Ground program has up to twelve participants and three facilitators. Each facilitator has received training and bring their own unique experience to support the men.

Typically a Common Ground group will explore topics such as relationships, sexuality, masculinity, fathering and more.
Common Ground runs for nine evenings – lasts a lifetime!

What Men Say

  • Adrian, Mansfield

    I went to Common Ground to help me get through my divorce. It also gave me a whole new world where I can deeply understand myself and from there consciously create a wonderful life I didn't know even existed.

  • Clayton, Coorparoo

    Common ground gave me a greater sense of myself and a greater awareness of my emotions and how to express them. It gave me a boost in confidence also and more skills to be assertive in relationships and my communications in life.

  • Mark, Wakerley

    Being from the country and now living in the city I found things quite different (and difficult) at times. Common ground has helped me understand myself and taught me to be much more open, a great experience and highly recommendable.

  • David, Wynnum

    I'd lost my purpose. Common Ground gave me a way to find it and a group of friends to support me.

  • Will Wamban, NSW

    Common Ground was a profound experience for me, supporting me in every way following some very difficult life experiences in recent years. I felt validated and protected in being myself after a life of being what other people wanted me to be. It was scary stuff. My life has not got any easier, well maybe a little, but I now have some idea of who I am and possibly where my journey might be taking me.

  • Peter, Brisbane

    Common Ground changed my world by showing me that I had choices. The proof of the value of this program is that I am alive today and living a happy life. Without wanting to be dramatic, my only expectation before Common Ground was a bitter death, sooner rather than later. Yet here I am. I know that the key has been the Common Ground program. I recommend it to you.

  • Shane, Ocean Shores

    The nine week Common Ground process had a profound effect on my life. It gave me deep connection with other men, healed my wounds with my father and helped me to see the "stories" and belief systems which had been programmed into me which I allowed to run my life. The facilitation was excellent with three facilitators for twenty men. Being delivered over nine weeks gave time for strong bonds to be welded between us. We still meet weekly after 2 and a half years.

  • Dave, Melbourne Bayside

    Common Ground provided me an opportunity to understand and connect with myself, and other men, in a deep and meaningful way. I felt listened to, supported and encouraged throughout and departed the experience feeling inspired and motivated. Seeds that were planted continue to blossom, as do the friendships I have made with my group peers. I cannot recommend it highly enough.

  • Ben, Durack

    My reason for attending common ground was that I wanted to better deal with my anger and my addictions. In the process of exploring these things, I managed to quit my job and take my business full time. The men's group that followed the course helped give me the support and self belief to tackle things in my life I never thought I was capable of.

Benefits of our Common Ground program.

Feel more grounded and present
Experience more intimacy and connection
Develop closer relationships with others
Experience a safe environment to share and be heard

Your Investment

The Free Info Session is of course FREE.

If you decide to join the group, your deposit is just $40. This $40 secures your place in the Common Ground Course and can be paid at the Free Info Session or online here.

The balance of the course fee is due in week four. Your balance is self-assessed using a sliding scale; meaning those of us who earn more – pay more, and those of us who earn less – pay less.

This allows us to always provide a man a place on the program, even if he is in very difficult financial circumstances. And by the way, we don’t ask you to tell us your income. That is private to you, the sliding scale works on trust.

You know what your household income (after tax) amounts to, so we ask you to contribute according to the table below.

Note that even men on low incomes are asked to invest something, to make their contribution and their commitment.

Common Ground Program

Household Income

Per-week After TaxSign-on FeeWeek 4 FeeTotal
Under $500$40$50$90
$501-800$40$190$230
$801-$1200$40$390$430
Over $1200$40$630$670

Upcoming Common Ground Programs

Location
Info Session Details
Program Start Date
Location: Brisbane North
Info Night Details: 20/05/2024 7:00 pm
Program Start Date: 03/06/2024 7:00 pm
Location: Brisbane South
Info Night Details: 19/05/2024 2:30 pm
Program Start Date: 26/05/2024 2:30 pm
Location: Northern Gold Coast Region
Info Night Details: TBA
Program Start Date: TBA
Location: Ipswich
Info Night Details: 05/03/2024 7:00 pm
Program Start Date: 19/03/2024 7:00 pm

This program is no longer taking bookings however you can still register your interest for a future program at this location.

Location: Melbourne
Info Night Details: 23/04/2024 7:00 pm
Program Start Date: 07/05/2024 7:00 pm
Location: Sunshine Coast
Info Night Details: TBA
Program Start Date: TBA
Location: Toowoomba
Info Night Details: TBA
Program Start Date: TBA

Frequently Asked Questions

The course (we also call it a program) usually runs one evening a week for nine weeks. Usually there are about 10 men who have decided to take the course and two or three facilitators who run it. Each week different topics are discussed by the group. The important thing to know that there are no lectures or whiteboards and the discussions will often go to places that the participants have never felt able to talk about before.
You pay for the course and that funds it. We keep the costs to a minimum and we subsidise men who have financial hardship where we can. We don't get any government support and this allows us to both be independent of politicians and not be subject to cutbacks.
Well over 1000 men have done Common Ground in Queensland, Victoria and Tasmania. The program has been running for over 10 years in the Brisbane area.
Yes, for the nine weeks of the course it is a men’s group run by the facilitators. At the end of the course its usual for the men to decide that they will keep meeting and will run their men’s group themselves. Some of the groups formed in this way have continued for many years and they develop a life of their own.
Yes. One of the guidelines for the groups is that participation in everything is voluntary. This means that you won't be asked to "do stuff" that is unsafe. In fact, there are several guidelines that are there to keep everyone safe which you will be asked to agree to. Having said that most men find the program challenging. At times it may bring up feelings that are uncomfortable or we may have to face parts of ourselves we don't like. If it wasn’t a challenge it wouldn't be worth doing would it?
No. It's not religious, political, gay, straight or any other thing like that. The agenda is to get men listening and supporting each other and learning the way to run their own men’s group if that is what they want.
Our community has many valuable members including some men who are same-sex oriented. They are no more or less in number than in general life and many of our members don’t actually know or even ask these questions because it simply doesn’t matter. You will find our community more interested in ‘who you are’ more than your job or who you share your bed with.
Provided that you have attended all the 9 weeks, if you are not satisfied with value for money then contact the program manager and he will refund what you paid. His email is: cg@menswellbeing.org
Things like: emotions, relationships, sex, fathers and fathering, masculinity. It’s the hard stuff that is usually not explored at all or is talked about superficially. Common Ground gets below the surface.
We run men's groups in two ways: The first we call Open Men's Groups. These are free. The second we call Common Ground men's groups. We try and match the cost to your ability to pay. See the details on this page.
Before each course runs we have an information session which is free and you can go to meet the facilitators who will be running the course and learn more about it. You can also meet other men who have done the Common Ground course. Info Sessions usually run on a weeknight from 7:00pm to 9:00pm, on the same weeknight we are planning to run the program.
Our standard cancellation policy is published at Terms and Conditions and has has been updated in light of Covid19. If you experience Covid19 symptoms or learn you have been in contact with a known case you must not attend our gatherings. You will not need a medical certificate to obtain a refund. All cancellations relating to Covid19 will be refunded in full without question. We will follow all Qld Health guidelines in force at the time of the Gathering.
Over the nine weeks of the course we get to know each other really well including some of our difficulties. Naturally enough the men give each other support and in many cases friendship as well. Then if the group continues after the nine week these connections grow and deepen.
Have a look at the testimonials. You will see that everyone gets different things but you will notice the common themes of getting connected, regaining control of life, solving problems, becoming a better man/dad/husband, getting happier.
We have a lot of feedback from partners (including some ex-partners) which say things like "better dad" or "I don’t have to walk around on eggshells, he is much less trigger happy". It’s pretty simple: a happier man makes for better life for people he has around him. Have a look at the testimonials.
We are running courses in Melbourne and the Brisbane region including the Gold and Sunshine coasts. If you are in Tasmania, contact Tasmen. Have a look at the booking page for details of dates and locations.
Over 20 years ago a group of Brisbane men ran a men's help phone service. This eventually evolved into the Men's Wellbeing association and the Common Ground program.
Firstly it's facilitated by men who have done the course themselves so they know what it is like to come along to something that's different. Secondly they are trained to deliver the program. Finally, they are not experts or psychologists who are going to tell you how to lead your life but they are really skilled at running groups and supporting men to look at themselves and to connect to each other. It's not a program which sets out to "fix" you, but it will provide a place where you can work on fixing or extending yourself.
It's run by Men's Wellbeing Inc which is a not-for-profit community association. Our tag line is "Men Supporting Men" and that pretty much sums it up. The Common Ground program is one of the things we do. You can look at our website www.menswellbeing.org.
Good question. The answer is probably that as a community association we don't have the resources to advertise. We are glad you have heard of it now!
Well you probably don't need one to survive. However maybe you need one to thrive? A place where you can step back from the pressure, be accepted without being judged and where you can be heard. If you have never been to one then you really don’t know what you are missing. You have got nothing to lose by coming along and finding out!

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