On Friday 8th July, a group of young people from Dormans and Bewbush Youth Centre packed their belongings for what was one of the greatest camping trips in Sussex.
“Ooo-er” – on the wooble board
That afternoon, bags were loaded and seatbelts fastened as the mini bus started up to begin the weekend adventure. As we approached Pulborough, members faces grew with excitement as the stresses of school and homework were left stranded behind them.
We arrived at the campsite pitching up our tents (our own homes for the weekend) and the fun and games began. Opposite us, we could see other tents rising from the ground- a youth group from Burgess Hill which gave the members the chance the meet and improve their social skills by meeting new people in a fun and sociable way.
As the evening approached- Dinner was served with a nice selection of drinks and pizza to choose from as well as mouth-watering chocolate cake for pudding. Once dinner went down and the darks skies above began to draw in, it was time for Manhunt- a fun game which everyone enjoyed. Torches lit up the dark depths of the forests as members hid in the dark corners of the woods with nothing but their shadows behind them, hoping not to be caught.
11pm came and the first adventurous day was over, as the sound of the zips shut for the last time, all the sleep was needed for the action-packed, adrenaline rush day which was to follow tomorrow morning.
Saturday 9th July
Birds tweeted and the harmonious red rays of the sun shone on the field below as heads rose from the warm, comfy beds of the tents. Breakfast was served- we needed as much energy as we could to fulfil the fun day ahead. Cheers and laughter filled the campsite as small teamwork games began to flourish while we waited for the activity centre to open on the hill in front.
11:00am came and it was time to experience the joys of the whole campsite. First up was rock-climbing, although worried eyes looked up the tall, sheer height of the building and people sweating so profusely with fear, encouragement from the CCYS staff was amazing and a lot of achievements wouldn’t have been fulfilled if it wasn’t for them.
“You can do it” screamed everyone.
“You can do it” screamed the members and the team from down below, members got the experience to overcome their fear of heights. As members took their last leap and step up the small, green rocks the success of what they achieved was astonishing.
The first activity wasn’t over yet, it was time for the abseiling. Members climbed up many long, steep steps until we reached the top, eyes looked down but then the adrenaline kicked in. As harnesses were tied and helmets hooked on it amazed me that EVERYONE in my group attempted the abseiling which was another huge achievement.
The second activity was the wobble board, many metres high in the air, members has had the chance to learn trust- a very important life skill, this was achieved by pulling ropes and encouraging others up the high obstacle.
Last activity of the day was tunnelling- certainly the muddiest and most damp part of the day, however, we were very lucky that the weather above gave us bright rays of sun. One by one, members entered the tunnel, confronted with the dark, long crawl ahead. Nevertheless helmets, equipped with lights gave members the guidance they needed. Laughs and joy echoed down the tunnel as the fun, rare opportunity drew to a close.
Dinner time then come, pasta and garlic bread soothed the taste buds of people at the table. In the evening out came the marshmallows and the members got to experience life round the camp fire. We could hear nothing but the sheer crackling of the fire as it engulfed the energy from the wood below.
Sunday 10th July
As the sound of the birds filled the trees and the morning drew in, it was time for breakfast. There was a range of cereals on offer as well as the sweet smell of bacon and eggs that filled the air.
After that, tents started to be taken down as sadly, the trip was over. Although once down, there was the chance to play human spider- a game that involves a lot of team work and motivation.
As music filled the atmosphere of the indoor classroom-the slight bit of rain did not ruin the last few moments in camp and there was certainly no damped spirits! Once the game was over we had lunch and then filled the mini bus with all our belongings one by one.
Tired faces filled the mini bus on the way home, although this wasn’t a bad thing, it showed that camp was fun and definitely an opportunity that both staff and members would venture on again!
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