WOW! We had an excellent, eventful and quite successful term 3!
Key achievements this term were: fundraising and donating $175.00 to the Kenbe La Foundation – The Source of Hope School — as part of our community focus projects, a Luncheon for invited guests, and school Camp!
The aim of our Community Focus Friday afternoons was to allow the students to think/look outside themselves at other people within our community. Not just the community we live in, but our community as a city, as a nation and as part of the global community.
How did the students achieve success in fundraising $175.00? By hard work on the part of the students, the staff, and people/organisations within our community. The idea came about at the start of Term 3, when we were researching Haiti and the effects of the devastating earthquake in January. We took particular interest in the story of Emily Sanson-Rejouis, who lost her husband and two of her three daughters. Part of her healing was to have her husband’s dream of a school for the impoverished young people of Haiti built.
We had a sausage sizzle – and thanks to Mitre 10 Mega Petone for letting us have our sausage sizzle there and to Brumby’s in Johnsonville for donating many loaves of bread … and also our Challenge College Principal who paid for the other resources to ensure that the money we raised all went towards our goal. The students did a fabulous job, and did themselves and Challenge College proud.
The other fundraising event was our performance of a 15 minute version of William Shakespeare’s Romeo & Juliet. The students were outstanding, even though they had stepped well out of their comfort zone. And the audience were further entertained with a performance from one of our students, an up & coming rap artist – Tyler, also known as Ty-1. Family, friends and Challenge 2000 staff came along to support the students, making at least a gold coin donation at the door to help in our Haiti fundraising efforts.
As part of the students’ think/look outside ourselves initiative, we thought it would be good to give back to those who love and support us. So the students each invited a family member or a Challenge 2000 staff member to a lunch that they planned, prepared and cooked. During term 3, the students had been involved in cooking classes and used some of the recipes they had learnt. The menu consisted of sushi, chicken pie and salad, chocolate cake, butterscotch sauce and ice cream for dessert.
Each student invited someone and all did their part to help prepare, cook and serve the meal to their guests – a great effort by all of the students.
We travelled in the van over the Rimutaka ranges to Greytown, then headed inland to our home for the next three days and two nights. To many people’s delight we had a roof, four walls, running hot and cold water and flushing toilets! We set up, unpacked and then headed to experience, some for the first time, a dairy farm near Masterton. The weather was horrible and made things a little unpleasant! After a swim at the Masterton pool Andy organised a lovely ‘bush tucker’ dinner of sausages, veges and potatoes, before we all readied ourselves for bed and ‘camp fire’! Since the weather was still not being kind to us, a torch lantern in the middle of the floor had to suffice as our ‘camp fire’. We told stories and Andy introduced us to ‘Cedric’ the local boogie man!
Fine weather the next day saw us travelling to Cape Palliser to see the largest colony of seals in the North Island and then climbing 258 steps to the light house. All of us made it to the top. After lunch we practised our waiata for our visit to Papawai Marae. We all enjoyed our marae experience and learnt a lot! Then Andy took the boys to collect fire wood so we could have a real camp fire that night, while the girls had a good gossip over dinner preparations.
Dinner was eaten with the camp fire raging, and it didn’t matter where we moved — the wind would change and send the smoke to us! Our camp fire Leader Andy, with helper Jeff, prepped the fire for marshmellow roasting, at which we all had a go. Some were natural talents, others needed a bit of coaching from Andy. Before bed we each shared our highlight for the day.
Last day of camp, and the weather was still good. Breakfast, pack up, tidy up, ready to return home after lunch. The driving range before lunch was a blast! There were some students who were good, one hitting the ball over 150m, while two of the staff members hit it past 200m!
Then clean up, load up and finish off our camp with a thought from each participant on how they felt about camp. Such an amazing experience was the consensus of all and the students were asking to stay longer, or at least have another camp in Term 4!
Because it had snowed the night before we stopped at the top of the Rimutaka hills and had a snow fight – the first time for some of the students! Then we were back at Challenge College. What a great time we had!