After months of planning and ‘will we or won’t we’ speculation, AISHK Year 7 students were finally able to engage in an exciting and character-building camp over the course of this week.
We spent most of the week based in Sai Kung and began with a range of team building and strategy-based activities on day 1 that prepared us for the challenges that lay ahead. The following days saw students in small groups rotating through three different day long activities; hiking, canyoning and coasteering. The groups had been mixed and allowed students to forge bonds with new friends and to rediscover old friends. For the accompanying AISHK staff members, it was pleasing to see our students extending their social horizons and finding ways to support and collaborate with their peers.
For many students, coasteering was the high point. This activity was based in Clearwater Bay and required students to move from point to point by way of rock scrambling, zip lining, abseiling and good old-fashioned climbing. It certainly pushed many students (and staff) out of their comfort zone, providing all with an experience they will surely never forget. The adrenalin rush of the cliff to cliff zip line was one thing, but there was also the spectacular scenery. In the midst of those glorious views on a cliff top somewhere in Clearwater Bay, you’d scarcely have known we were in the midst of a pandemic.
After much of 2020 being spent online, illuminated by the blue glow of a Zoom call, Year 7 camp has not only provided us with a chance to enjoy the great outdoors but it has also provided us with an opportunity to simply be together. The affirmation of our individual and collective identities lies outside of our biology. Our humanness is contingent on our ability to empathise; to share in the experiences of others and seek connection from common feeling and understanding. I’m delighted to have been reminded of that over the last four days.
Of course, the camp would not been possible without our wonderful Dragonfly facilitators and the many AISHK staff who attended in a support capacity. Miss Craig, Mr Tait, Ms Spencer and Mrs Vanderhoek attended all four days of camp and we were also joined by Mr Potts, Mrs Carter, Mr Freer, Mr McLean, Mr McGunnigle, Mr Foreman and Mrs Haymes at various points throughout the week. Thank you for your willingness to participate wholeheartedly and your support of our students. Special thanks should also go to Mr West, Mrs Bhaumik, Ms Yuen and Mr Lo for their administrative and logistical support.
It has been a very long term and it has certainly felt like a very long year, but all Year 7 students should be commended for the vigour and energy with which they participated in camp. What a way to finish the year. Well done to all involved and bring on 2021!
Jo Craig | Head of Year 7 – 2020