Tuesday, 30 August 2011

Its Good Bye from me but Hello too...

So its come to that time of the year where we are saying good bye to 2010-2011's DisTIL team and welcoming 2011-2012's DisTIL team. But before I introduce you to next years team, I think a recap of the year is needed.

Firstly at the start of the year I asked James.F, Robert, Rachel, Sarah and me some questions one of which being what there aim was for the year. Now we are at the end I have two more How was the year for you? and What are you doing next? Plus I am also going to ask JL and Simon (the one and only second year).


How was the year for you?

The year was amazing and really enjoyed it.

What are you doing next?

I am going to be:
  1. Going to California on holiday with my parents and brother.
  2. Going to Abingdon and Witney college studying carpentry.
  3. Looking for a fun and enjoyable job.
How was the year for you?
The year gave me the confidence in myself and it gave a different aspect on life, and that working for a company can be fun.
What are you doing next?
Continuing on to my second year at Adventure Plus - for some reason - They decided to keep me around for another year! I am looking forward to the challenge of another year and developing my skills further. (written by Ruth)

How was the year for you?
Being now in the position of having spent 12 months with Adventure Plus it seems strange to look back and acknowledge how far we all have come in a year! The DisTIL programme has been a fantastic training opportunity, and that stretches much further than the activities: the range of skills we've developed is wide-reaching. Of course there have been difficult moments ('We've been living together all year and I think I want to strangle you but I'm not sure why' ; 'John-Luke, if you ask me to go to the barn once more in this freezing weather I think I might cry,' and
so on...) but overall the year has been a great blessing and definitely a positive experience.
What are you doing next?

Adventure Plus have--for some reason--made the decision to keep me around! I'm really looking forward to another year here and the chance to gain more insight into the running of a truly unique organisation. And it should be a lot of fun, too!

How was the year for you?
When I arrived I didn't really know what to expect to be honest, I was excited about learning more about the outdoors and gaining qualifications as well as leading a life that God wanted me to. During the year I enjoyed waking up, and having the first 30min of the working day dedicated to God, which included a morning thought, and prayer time, each day. A great way to start the day.
I found it exciting getting to work in the local schools such as Dragon, New College and Blake, it was amazing getting to see the kids week on week, and build a relationship with them and see them gain in their own confidence, skills and abilities.
Wall bookings, residentials and TAs were amazing too. But I generally loved being out of the office on the bookings, working and being the facilitator of different activities for individuals, letting them experience God's creation, have fun and learn more, and build relationships with their groups.
During this year I made some good friends, grew as a person and in God, and gained some pretty cool qualifications, and had loads of fun. Therefore all in all this year has been pretty awesome, I've loved it and it's been a great experience and well worth it.

What are you doing next?
Now to start a new adventure!
I am moving back to Swansea, where I am going to be looking for a job working with children and possibly linked to outdoor education.

Simon (second year)
How was the year for you?
My 2 years at Adventure Plus have been great, I've learnt all about outdoor activity and people. Already having a paddling background has helped me in achieving my level 2 canoe and kayak coach and 4* training. I have become A+'s first D of E assessor, supervising on a gold and silver D of E paddling trips on the Thames and up in Scotland. I have found many new friends here and I hope to stay in contact.

What are you doing next?
My future is rather blurry at the moment; but I will possibly be do an apprenticeship and some part time work with my Godfather, which I hope will help me decide where I want to work. I am glad to say my faith in God is stronger now and I am asking a lot more questions and praying for answers. I hope the new gappies have a great time next year. I will be volunteering so keep me posted and see you soon...

Ruth (ME)
How was the year for you?

12months on and I can't believe how much I have put into one year! From September where I was not so sure about this instructing thing to now where I love it. I can truly say this year has been amazing, eventful, crazy, hard work, physical, cold, hot, challenging, indescribably and awesome! At the start of the year I said I want to be made to feel uncomfortable because I would then know God would use me more than I he could if I was comfortable and this has been so true. This year has not been comfortable all the way but I have loved it all the same working with all kinds of people from all ages! (though if anyone asks me to go to the barn in winter again I might have to think twice or just wear lots of clothes!) Now for a new adventure!

What are you doing next?

For my next adventure I am going to become a student again! (just a bit of a change!) I'm going to Brighton University to study children's nursing! Again I hear you cry
that's a little different to being an outdoor ed instructor. Yes it is however that's the beauty of it being able to apply the skills I have learnt this year to an indoor medical environmental might seem impossible but in fact there are a lot of things in common between the two! (though Climbing and paddling inside a hospital might be more of a challenge not just a sight to see!) And of course I will be coming back to volunteer - once you have been at A+ you never leave!

John-Lukes (comments)

How was the year for you?

This past year has been another big learning curve - but then every year is. Different people, different personalities, different issues. The aim is simple - train the team up to become professional instructors. Fine. There are processes and guidelines to get there too but as soon as you take one step that's where simplicity gets off. Ultimately we have arrived. The destination might look different to the last time I was here and the journey was certainly full of tangents but all of that just means there's a lot of good stories to tell you over a coffee. Go on then - put the kettle on.

What are you doing next?

Does having a baby count? Yes, strictly speaking my wife is the one 'having' it but if that's not the biggest news in my life at the moment then there's something ginormous I've missed. Obviously with those leaving there is another team arriving so, work wise, my job comes full circle and I take the first step toward reaching that destination spoken about above. You'll read all about that in the weeks and months ahead though so...have you made that coffee yet?

Thanks JL! Now in any year there are many different things that you learn so here we go
10 things i have leaned this year (next years team make notes)!
  1. Vehicles - I have learnt more about vehicles than I ever thought I would (which considering I don't drive is a little crazy!)
  2. Sleep - we all agree is amazing so make sure you get enough (a quick nap while traveling might seem a good idea but if its just you and a driver then think again!)
  3. Sweets - one of the essential things to pack for traveling to a booking (not just for you but the driver to if not everyone else!)
  4. Blanket/pillow - another essential for traveling minibuses might be bigger but not as comfy as cars, so take a blanket or pillow!
  5. Sleeping bags - ever got cold when camping! well i have the answer fleece PJs work wonders but have you ever tried putting one sleeping bag inside another! (its cozy!:D)
  6. Jogging bottoms - so they don't look that great buy are so so so comfy!
  7. Thermals - yes they make you think 'but that's what old people wear!' but there an amazing invention :)
  8. flexible - now i'm not talking about how flexible your body is but being flexible in what you do! it makes live more spontaneous and exciting!
  9. Take every opportunity you get with open hands you never no where it may lead!
  10. Finally if you have never been CLIMBING before thats shocking but still give it a go you never know you might find you love it :) In fact any outdoor activity if you have not tried it your missing out!

So go play! Its an amazing playground out there which God has created for us! :D

So that leaves me to say its Good Bye from me and hello to the new team :-
Matt, Dave, Marcus, Nick with second years Rachel and James.F!

Next time on - New team! New Year!
Please pray for everyone who is leaving and starting the DisTIL year as they move onto there next adventure...

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