The recent warm and sunny weather has given so many of us a much-needed boost after what felt like a very long, dark winter. Fortunately, the change in weather coincided perfectly with our Watersports Activity Days, allowing our young people (and our staff and volunteers!) to get out and have some fun in the sun.
This time of year is traditionally when we would be running our Coastal Camp. However, with COVID-19 restrictions not yet fully relaxed, we were delighted to be able to offer a host of our usual Coastal Camp activities to our young people in one action packed Watersports Day.
Over the course of the half term we ran a total of six Activity Days following the latest COVID-19 related guidance on running group activities. The young people who took part benefitted greatly and achieved so much. They showed real resilience, pushing through fears and anxiety, trying new activities, and ultimately achieving things they didn’t think they were capable of.
A particular highlight for many was the stand-up paddleboarding. Most of our young people had never had the chance to try this increasingly popular sport before and many seemed to be absolute naturals with superb balance and big smiles on their faces!
Sailing was another sport almost none of the young people had tried before. Despite some changeable winds, sailing was incredibly successful. After some initial anxiety, many young people surprised themselves with how easy they found it and how much they achieved under sail. Kayaking was also very popular, as was our final session of the day, raft building. After such an action packed day in the sun it was no surprise to look around the coach and find most of the young people – and some of the volunteers – fast asleep on the way home!
It was incredibly rewarding to be able to offer our young people the experience of these watersports activities despite our usual Coastal Camps not taking place. The amount of enthusiasm and energy they brought to the day allowed them to get so much out of it. We would also like to thank Wiltshire Community Foundation for funding these days and enabling us to continue to bring adventure and inspiration to so many young people across the half term.
“At the start I really didn’t want to take part but I’m so glad you persuaded me to get into a wetsuit and join in. I loved all the activities, especially sailing, the instructor said I was actually pretty good at it. I’m so glad I gave all the activities a try and I’ve learnt things aren’t as bad as they seem, I just have to try and control my anxiety more. Thanks for a brilliant day” – Young Person