Once again the Year 8 ERC boys have experienced the natural wonders of Coolendel on the Shoalhaven river at their annual camp. We had a very wet start but the boys entered into the activities enthusiastically – a bit of rain was not going to dampen their spirits!
With the river in flood and water cascading over the abseil cliff, alternate and equally enticing activities were quickly put in place – Rogaine orienteering, battle royal on the high wires, bush walk up to Mt Grady, the great crate climb, the dangle and the flying fox accompanied camp favourites including the Koori experience and mountain bike riding.
Preparing, cooking and clean up skills were learnt and developed for each tasty meal – with the self prepared food receiving rave reviews! The list of new skills and learnings encountered over the three days proved difficult to catalogue.
But year in year out, it is the intrinsic rewards that each boy feels and experiences that are the lasting benefits of being on camp with their school mates. New found lasting friendships; feeling the joy of overcoming adversity and fears, challenging themselves in a safe way to step beyond their comfort zone, growing in resilience when facing different conditions, working together to achieve a common goal and helping their mate along the way, gaining a deeper appreciation of themselves, their strengths, their capabilities and their potential. Camp is a spike in their maturation and growth to be good men and this year’s camp was no exception.
Special thanks to the Optimum Experiences staff who once again demonstrated the highest standards of care and skills in camping and running activities with the boys for five days. Also thanks to the ERC staff for giving of their own time to supervise, conjure, encourage, build confidences and occasionally comfort the boys on their camp experience.
Year 8 Pastoral Care Coordinator