- Karen Visser
No Limits making a difference
In the past month, three groups have been taken on day trips as part of No Limits Phase 1, and Unlimited. The days were chilly but the sun was out so the weather worked in their favour, helping everyone to have an enjoyable day! We had a number of volunteers connect with No Limits through Compelled By Love, all of whom were a great help with cooking and fantastic with the students!
The day trips are always a great turning point for many students. It gives them the opportunity to come out of their shell and participate in activities on a deeper level. One girl who rarely talks has been getting right into activities in the sessions since the day trip, this is a big shift for her! Similarly, another anxious and insecure girl has become a lot more confident. The students are participating in deeper chats and sharing more, which Robert (director of YaFT-Xplore, who runs the programs) says "is enjoyable to be a part of."
As Phase 1 is coming to an end, some of the boys have begun to ask questions about Phase 2 and how many spots there are. They realised with only 15 spots available that some boys will not get the opportunity to continue - this is okay as some don't want to and others aren't ready. It is a great sign that they are asking these questions as it shows they are interested and engaged with the program. The fact that they are keen to continue means they have taken something of value from Phase 1.
The Unlimited group is going really well. Unlimited is similar to No Limits, but is designed for primary school aged students. One boy is a real leader, but struggles and was somewhat abusive to a teacher after the day trip. The Chaplain advocated for this student, who ended up writing a letter with his own initiative, to the teacher apologising for his behaviour and taking responsibility. He also is asking boys who mess around to not hang around him anymore. This is just one example of the impact of the program, showing the students that they can make positive choices and be more thoughtful.
Overall, the day trips were a huge success! The students had a great time and the new staff and volunteers did a wonderful job! The programs continue to run and each week, the students continue to make positive progress!