MERRI-BEK WEEK 2 TERM 3 2023
So glad to have gotten through another week and what a week it was.
On Wednesday the 2nd of August we collected the crew at Oxygen youth space for a morning book session. We were touching on respectful relationships, which is a program designed to talk about the most pressing issues/topics that young people themselves have identified. This includes but is not limited to, what respect is and looks like, respecting other groups such as the LGBTQIA+ community, healthy boundaries and values in relationship and consent. It was a whirlwind of a discussion as there were many comments, questions and even anecdotes about these topics. We held a few breaks through the day and had some free time when it was needed. When this session came to an end we moved our group to our next activity, a spin class at coburg leisure center. We want our young people to be aware of the services around them and experience different types of exercises, to see what they might or might not enjoy. When there we met with our trainer Phil, who will be joining us for our total of 3 sessions with coburg leisure center. He kept the crew up beat as he introduced the activity and went full force into our spin class. The group was inexperienced but fired through, only taking breaks when necessary. Once this sweat session finished up we thanked Phil before heading off to Oxygen youth space once more, and choosing a walk around its neighboring trails. Everyone enjoyed the ending as we finished off with some free play and went back to the bus before dispersing for the day.
On Thursday the 3rd we were on our way to our first camp, Paddle2Peak. Once collecting our crew at collingwood station we went on our way to our first activity, white water rafting. We soon met with Pagie and Mark, two lovely Rubicon staff who were pumped to take us through our rafting session. With some initial safety, gear change and rafting briefings we got ready for our introduction to rafting. Everyone was nervous but keen, taking their first steps into the water and sitting in the inflatable rafts. This day can be intimidating to many as although we have safety gear, moving water can be a tough game to face. We first went through the initial how-to's of rafting in pairs, before moving down the river to our first rapid. Going one at a time each group faced the current and powered through the trip, excited for more rapids to come. When we eventually got to more rapids down the way some groups fell in or tipped ever so slightly into the water. Even though some got more wet than wanted, the crew was laughing and exhilarated the entire way. With a small break in between for lunch we continued the river path before finishing up with our session. The group did well with facing the water and listening to instructions while in the act of rafting and should be very proud of their achievements this day. When we finished we packed up, changed and thanked Pagie and Mark before going on our way to our campsite, Wesburn Recreation Camp. The space has a rec room, kitchen, dining hall, cabins and toilets, all one could need on a camp. The crew were put into pairs before unpacking and exploring, playing some games before dinner. That night both Markus and Jayden took over in the kitchen, making our very deserved pasta dinner. They were hard at work, cooking, cleaning and soon eating with the whole group. When done we let the group choose some spaces and times to chat with one another. This went on till bedtime where we all went back to our own cabins. Some camps can be off putting, even scary for some young people, and although this was a new place our crew did their best acclimatizing to their spaces before the next day.
On Friday the 4th we had a rather slow morning, with hopes of a morning hike soon dwindling due to high winds. Having a pancake breakfast, the crew was fueled to go about cleaning and re-organising the space for the next group to come in. Though this took longer than expected the crew came together in a mixture of teams to conquer each step, with a final look around before making and cleaning up after lunch. When we had moved off from the space we headed towards Mount Donna Buang. This space has a lookout that on a clear day can see as far as the distant city of Melbourne. This day however, with the high winds many trees had begun to fall along our route up the mountain. Due to this we drove the way up to the look out, climbed the look out and took a quick group photo before heading off for home. The group did extremely well facing new challenges, and we are very proud of what they have achieved and look forward to what the next few weeks come with.