Week 6 on the program and the term is flying by! This week is jam packed full of big activities that are working both our body and mind.
We started the week by going caving at Britannia creek caves. Caving is an activity that is mentally challenging as it takes us out of our comfort zone and can provoke anxiety. We picked up the young people from Collingwood station, put the playlist on and made our journey to the cave. Once at the cave we geared up in our overalls, helmets, head torches and went through the safety brief. After getting a idea of how we were all feeling we dove straight into the cave. This activity brings out the best in groups as it requires a lot of team work and team encouragement. It was warming to see how well everyone supported and encouraged each other to continue on. We had moments of tight squeezes, commando crawls and a few wet feet but made it out alive. Everyone was able to take on a leadership roles by navigating the group or by looking after the safety equipment that we needed. We washed our hands and feet, had lunch and drove home to a nice shower.
Thursday was a creative day on the program as we were hiphop writing at Yarra Youth Services with Motley. Motley is an well known artist that the Newstart program has worked with for years. He has incredible passion and zest in what he does and makes the young people feel very comfortable. We got to yarra youth and went straight into the the music room to start the session. After a intro and performance from Motley, quick brainstorm of our topic and a quick overview of music theory the young people were off writing their raps. It was amazing to see how quickly this group wrote their parts and got into the both. While each of us were working individually with Motely and his crew the rest of us were doing reflection activities down stairs. We finished the day by listening to our completed song.
Friday was an interesting day as we had to make a change in the program. Due to a number of reasons we had a lower number of students and so we gave the ones that came the choice in what we did. The options were a mix of outdoor, education and leisure activities. We presented the young people with the options of IMAX, rock climbing, mountain bike riding, going to the climate change rally or seeing a movie at Hoyts. Giving them the power and making them to the research on pricing and availability seeing a movie at Hoyts won. The movie we saw was Captain Marvle and although this activity falls into the leisure category, it was great to see a movie with a strong female lead that touched on a lot of issues surrounding the female experience. On the way to and from the movies it was great to hear discussions of this happening amongst the young people. This group as well has been extremely organised, focused and up to date in all things program related. Given we had a group of three and that those three were up to date with their journal and have been present everyday on the program and at school, today was a way of celebrating their efforts. We saw the movie and had an early dismissal from Melbourne central.