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Yarra Term 2 Week 10

Hi everyone!

This was our last week on program and time has just flown by!

On Tuesday we spent the morning servicing our bikes that we used on camp and also built two bikes from the box to donate to two students at the English Language School. We had a professional bike mechanic, Donovan join us to help make sure the bikes were built all correctly and 100% safe for the new riders. When we donated the new bikes to the young students, the ONN students ran a safety lesson, following the ABCDE bicycle safety check with them. It was great to see the young people be in the position where they are teaching others and how they communicate effectively. I believe they all received great joy in donating the bikes.

On Wednesday we left for our expedition camp and travelled directly to the Wesburn Recreation Camp where we spent the night. Once we unpacked, we made our way to the Brittannia Creek Caves where we went caving for the afternoon. The location was beautiful and were lucky to have had decent weather. We geared up with our overalls, helmets and head torches and explored the wild cave. After our safety briefing, we all courageously squeezed through tights gaps and nooks, slid down boulders, crawled through holes, treaded through water and even saw some glow worms. For some students, this was a big challenge for them but they all did an amazing job! Together, they communicated effectively, encouraged each other and displayed leadership skills. We spoke about observing and acknowledging some of the reactions and symptoms we have when we feel anxious and nervous, including sweaty palms and increased heart rates. It is important to decipher certain coping mechanisms and use them effectively to calm us down. The students rated how anxious they were feeling before going into the caves (from 1-10 ) and were asked again half way through the cave. After exploring the caves, we went back to the camp and had hot showers. For the late afternoon we played games outside and in the recreation room before we cracked on with dinner. The students were exhausted from the days activities but managed to do some journal work before heading to sleep which was great.

On Thursday the young people did a bike ride along the Warburton Rail Trail, beginning at Warburton and ending at Woori Yallock Station, about 16kms. We were so lucky to have great weather. The young people did a great job and zoomed through the trail.

Today we had our graduation to celebrate the student's great achievements on program. Earlier today we went to play laser tag which was a lot of fun. We celebrated with pizza for lunch before the graduation began. Unfortunately we could not have people join us today because of the current restrictions, however we were able to host a virtual ceremony. The students did a good job with presenting their speeches especially because they were feeling nervous. Thank you all for sharing your experiences with us. We are proud of the students and what they have achieved during this program. Their efforts is a credit to themselves and this is an experience that they will never forget. Well done for stepping out of your comfort zone and taking a chance on yourself. Thank you to absolutely everyone who was involved on this term's program!


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