During the recent school holidays, 18 students from Taita, Naenae, Porirua, and Aotea College took part in a holiday programme with their respective Challenge 2000 school Social/Youth workers.
The day started with a visit to Stockdale Farm in Pauatahanui, hosted by Heather Kauri and her whanau. At the farm, the students were able to come up close and personal with sheep, donkeys, miniature horses, ducks, chickens, peacocks, pigs and a baby possum.
All of the animals residing at Stockdale are “rescue” animals, so they all have their own story, like the orphaned baby possum Pete that was found by the roadside one dark night, and Angelica the lamb who lost one of her legs as a result of a scuffle with a horse.
After a tour of the farm and its inhabitants, the students were split into teams for a miniature horse-led relay, with the added – and messy – bonus of trying to find a sweet in a plate full of icing sugar without using hands at the end. (Hint – do not laugh when trying to find the sweet!)
After a leisurely lunch in the sun, the group made their way to the Monterey Cinema in Upper Hutt to watch “Four Kids and It”, a tale of caution around being careful what you wish for. Obligatory movie viewing popcorn and ice-cream was included.
The day ended in the late afternoon, with several participants falling asleep on the ride home and all very thankful for the experience.
Thank you to the Challenge 2000 staff, to Stockdale Farm and the Nikau Foundation, without whom this day of connection, learning and fun would not have been possible.