Earlier this month we had our first of three Vision England Project weekends. Vision England is a project being run jointly by the Royal National Institute of Blind People and the Field Studies Council across three of our centres – Preston Montford, Juniper Hall & Castlehead. It aims to get young visually impaired students from across the country making friends, gaining confidence and learning about the environment.
At Preston Montford we have 13 young people aged between 14 and 17 from the West Midlands on our programme of activities. The first afternoon was spent getting to know each other, settling in to their bedrooms and exploring the grounds with a spot of Orienteering followed by an evening around the campfire sharing stories and thoughts and feelings of the afternoon. Sharing is a key part of this project as all our young people are aiming to achieve their John Muir Discovery Award which encourages students to Discover, Explore, Conserve and Share a natural area.
Our full day was spent at Carding Mill Valley to the south of Preston Montford and all students rose to the challenge of the hike up to the waterfall and getting in the river for some pond dipping. We also had a great talk from Patrick Edwards of the National Trust at Carding Mill Valley who told us about the conservation projects we can get involved in on our summer residential.
Their thoughts from the weekend:
‘I’m feeling absolutely fantastic’
‘I’m feeling satisfied and accomplished about myself’
‘I was feeling nervous earlier today but now I feel great’
‘I’ve discovered I can now do anything!’
‘I’m pleased I’ve managed to challenge myself and done well!’
‘I can’t wait for the next trip’
We can't wait to welcome back our Vision England students in Summer,
Lizz & Staci
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