Caving, canoeing, cliff traversing, camping, river crossings… all in a day’s work for our experienced outdoor education team. But for many of the kids on recent camps and day adventures, there were numerous fun firsts and new skills learnt.
Adventure Club was a summer holiday programme for 11 to 14 year olds that attracted a dozen children from around the region. They met at our Hastings Pakowhai office each day and when they arrived back seven hours later we could tell they’d had a great, if not tiring, full-on time.
Our Outdoor Education team took them on many adventures – stream walking, learning how to cross a river, how to cook outdoors, orienteering, river paddling, climbing, abseiling and caving.
Feedback was very positive, so we’ll be repeating the programme in October and next summer.
Our team also ran a free leadership camp through a Breakaway contract with Oranga Tamariki, in conjunction with Hastings District Council. We had capacity for 28 Year 7 and Year 8 children and there was overwhelming interest.
It was a very much back to basics camp at Opouahi, sleeping in tents, cooking over fires, no shower facilities, and shock horror, no cellphone coverage!
Children came from many different schools around the Hastings district, so new friendships were formed, and our team helped them focus on teamwork and interpersonal communication skills.
“The feedback was fantastic. The kids loved it and learnt a lot about themselves. One mother popped in a few weeks later to collect some left-behind property and shared her son was still buzzing about how cool the experience had been,” says Olivia Pierce, YMCA Youth Development Manager, who was part of our team involved with the camp.
“Another young person has since gone on to research outdoor experiences to share with their family and they came and had an afternoon on our climbing wall, they were so enthusiastic about all she’d experienced.”
There will be another opportunity next summer for those that missed out this time.