The weekend got off to a flying start with all of the young people arriving on time. This is the first weekend where we had catering provided and the young people were soon tucking in to a hearty lunch. Everyone was allocated to a group to take part in activities throughout the weekend and for helping with kitchen duties.
Volunteers cheerfully joined in this process and were very supportive. Sam was a new volunteer for us this time and she threw herself wholeheartedly into supporting the young people.
Friday afternoon saw us on the lake doing aqua zorbing. A fantastic sunny day (which made a nice change from last March’s weather when we were standing in the falling snow by the lake freezing to death!) helped the session to flow well as those not on the water were able to stand by the lake shouting encouragement. In the evening we went to the town centre Gallery MK to view an art exhibition.
Saturday saw the group taking part in fencing, crate stack and sailing. The activities provide an opportunity for the group to support, encourage and to understand each other. In the evening the group were supported to walk to the local.
On Sunday we had a trip to Bedford! The young people took part in a body surfing activity. The venue staff were very good and capable with our blind youths as they allowed them to touch and walk on the equipment before starting up the water. It was a very rewarding activity particularly for those with no vision and one young lady who had been quite withdrawn came to life on the water beaming from ear to ear. It also gave her something to talk about later and helped her to become a fully integrated member of the group.
Monday was a day for relaxing and packing before doing a 4 mile walk around the Caldecotte Lake, have lunch and go home.
Everyone without exception had a good time, we had lots of “thank yous” and requests to return.
This is now the third year that we have held these weekends and it never fails to amaze me how much confidence and joy the young people have gained by the end of the activity. Many of these young people have little opportunity to socialise and meet up and what we are providing is changing lives.