This year our North West team have been making use of new kayaking equipment thanks to Percy Bilton Charity & Key 103 Cash for Kids.
Earlier this month one group of students spent the day at Rutland Water taking part in activities to take them out of their comfort zone and push them to achieve things that they did not previous think possible. The group engaged in a range of activities learning how to control a 15ft open boat, including preparing to board the kayak, learning to steer and completing the open water set course. These activities encouraged them to work as a group, overcome new challenges, negotiate and compromise.
One student whose resilience shone through was Abigail. Abigail had been nervous in the run up to the day but she led by example and overcome her fears to be the first to complete the open water course we had set for them, before encouraging and supporting her peers, for some of them it was an achievement simply to get in a kayak.
Whilst taking part in this activity the young people:
- Developed teamwork and mutual trust
- Gained awareness of the environment
- Developed resilience in a new and challenging environment
- Gained a range of new skills
- Took responsibility for their own actions and decisions.
Abigai’s headteacher, Mr Johnson, said: “This was an exceptional experience for our children. They were positively glowing with the excitement of the voyage, working with new people, learning new skills and being together in this unique and stimulating way. Their ongoing work with SkillForce is of a very high quality. It is like having all the benefits of a residential experience every week. They can’t wait for the next session to begin”
The day complemented the ongoing mentoring and character education sessions that the young people have taken part in across the school year including the pilot of the new Prince William Award.