Darebin/Yarra Program Week Six

Last week! This term has absolutely flown by (as the shorter first term always does) and the final week has been no exception. It's been lots of fun though and really brought together all of the values we've focused on throughout the last 6 weeks.

Wednesday we set off early from the station to spend some time underground- caving at Labertouche. This is a particularly long day for us on the program because it takes a couple of hours to get to the caves but is well worth the travel. We were joined by Chris, our caving instructor who taught us about safety inside the cave before lowering us into a big black hole to start our exploration. It's hard to explain what caving is like, as it's a really full on experience like no other. There were definitely some nerves amongst the group, but we were amazed by how quickly these were eleviated. It didn't take long for the students to gain confidence in their ability in the cave, and to navigate their way through. Caving is physically tough, and the students really pushed hard to get through as a group quite quickly. It was great to see what a tight knit group we became for this final big activity. Overall it was really fun to go through this challenging experience with these students, and to see huge amounts of team work and communication.

Thursday was the student's official last day on the program aside from graduation. We spent the morning writing some reflections on the program and discussing the students' achievement and progressions. We also had time to work with the students to prepare their speeches for graduation. This was done in a really insightful way, although it was clear there were already some nervous students about having to speak in front of an audience tomorrow! After we'd gotten all the writing things out of the way, we had time to relax and just spend some time together. We had a delicious pizza lunch with Munro, Neil and Leah from Darebin Youth Services, all of whom we'd spent time with previously on the program. After lunch we headed up to Keon Park for a round of AMF bowling. This was a really enjoyable, relaxing (and mildly competitive!) way to finish out the term by having some fun and just enjoying each other's company.

Make sure you check out our seperate blog post on Graduation to see how we celebrated the achievements of these fantastic young people.

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Operation Newstart Northern

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