Hilltops Youth Have Fun At Jindabyne Summer Camp

Written by: The Hilltops Phoenix


Hilltops youth officers Emily and Anna with 19 excited kids from around the Hilltops enjoy a weekend visit to Jindabyne Summer Camp.

Around 6 am on Monday, January 22, Hilltops youth officers Emily and Anna departed Boorowa with 19 excited kids aged between 13 and 17 years from around the Hilltops region to visit Jindabyne Summer Camp.

Some had previously met and others were meeting for the first time. When they arrived at the Action Learning Initiatives Centre at Jindabyne, they joined with the group from the Snowy Monaro Regional Council.

They immediately broke into two teams and got stuck into Raft Building with rope, oars, empty barrels and wooden sleepers.

The kids tried to race their rafts, but, neither survived the journey from the bank to the water.

Instead, they had a swimming race before lunch and tried their hand at River Sledding later in the afternoon, which involved floating down light river rapids on an oversized inflatable boogie board.

Many found the exercise daunting, as they became stuck on rocks, capsized and were taken by currents, but everyone enjoyed it and gave it a go.

They had dinner and sat around the fire sharing their favourite parts of the day before heading for bed, most keen for an early night after such an early start to the day.

They prepared their lunches in the kitchen before having a pancake breakfast and prepared to climb Mount Kosciuszko.

They piled onto the coach and travelled to Thredbo before going through some safety precautions at the bottom and applying some sunscreen.

Tour guides stopped regularly to provide details and stories on topics such as the flora and fauna, the traditional custodians - the Ngarigo People, fun stories from past hikes and general conversation.

It was a 15 km return walk, with plenty of places to rest along the way.

That night the kids prepared a camp cook up for everyone, including spaghetti bolognese and chocolate cake and milo before bed.

Everyone was a bit sore upon waking on the last day but they were keen for the activities nonetheless.

After preparing their lunches and enjoying a hot breakfast, the kids were kitted out to go mountain biking, with helmets, elbow and shin pads and gloves mandatory.

Instructors ran through some Mountain bike basics and completed some practice trails before heading to the real thing out on the camp’s property.

Everyone was divided into three groups: beginners, intermediary and advanced.

A relaxed afternoon of crate climbing before heading home.

Overalls, helmets and harnesses were mandatory for the climbers. The group pulled into Boorowa around 8 pm where family members waited to collect them.

As well as being loads of fun, the kids learned new skills such as meal preparation, mountain biking, problem-solving, teamwork and resilience.

Emily thanked the team at Action Learning Initiatives, John and Tiff from Snowy Monaro Regional Council and John McIntosh for lending the group his bus.

She also wished Anna Dreverman all the best as she returned to teaching.

“Without these people, and the funding from the NSW Government and Hilltops Council, this trip would not have been possible and we are so thankful to have them in our communities,” Emily said.

“Thanks to the funding that Anna secured, we were able to run this camp at no cost.

“We were even able to give everyone $25 spending money for food stops on the way to Jindabyne and back.

“It was amazing to be out exploring an environment none of us had experienced before.

“We could see the kids becoming more comfortable and confident with each other and within themselves in just the three days we had together.

“There were even some tears at the end of the camp as new friends said goodbye.”


River-SleddingIMAGES: The youths were able to try their hand at several exciting activities, including river sledding and mountain hiking on their Jindabyne trip.

Hilltops Council

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