Reflections on Gold Duke of Edinburgh Journey

2019 01 05 dofe new zealand student report thumb 01Augusta Bothma - I enjoyed the Kepler and Routeburn tracks so much! The views were absolutely breathtaking. It challenged me both mentally and physically and enabled me to form strong bonds with both the students and teachers.

Nathan Toth - An amazing opportunity to witness some of the world’s greatest views and a great time to bond with some mates.

Tahlia Fulton – I loved that we all bonded through the highs and lows and have now become like a family. The views were also astonishing and listening to the history and culture of the people and land was really cool to learn about.

Aidan Sumskas - The beauty of New Zealand is really what makes this trip so special. From the views of zip lining to walking on mountaintops, God was there the whole time and this is what made New Zealand such a unique experience.

Nicholas White – New Zealand Gold Duke of Edinburgh was an experience that both challenged and rewarded everyone who was involved. The difficulty and uncertainty of both the Routeburn and Kepler tracks kept everyone on their toes with constant weather changes, which brought high winds and some inconvenient rain. Apart from the actual walks, the “days off” we had from hiking continued to stress the limits of our fitness with activities such as kayaking and bike riding straight after the walks. Whilst Duke Gold Duke of Edinburgh was challenging, it provided some of the most stunning landscapes and opportunities to bond with my fellow peers… An experience unlike any other and one has provided memories for life.

Lukas Kiehl - The Duke of Edinburgh New Zealand trip was an opportunity I’d never had before. I had never seen so many mountains or walked the distances I trekked in NZ. From absorbing majestic views on mountaintops, crawling through dark caverns and listening to the silence of lush beech forests there was something to enjoy for everyone. Though it was challenging at times, it was definitely worth it.

Ewan Maccoll – The Gold Duke of Edinburgh in New Zealand was an experience filled with unexpected challenges in areas I never could have predicted. It strengthened my mental spirit and physical body for future tasks, so I can accept every new challenge as it comes. The highlight of my trip was just being able to disconnect from the stresses of life back home and experience a whole load of new things I would not have experienced back in Australia.

Blake Ryan - My trip to New Zealand was definitely a once in a lifetime opportunity, where I was able to spend time seeing great views with great people.

Caden Wickham-Hill – The Gold Duke of Edinburgh trip was a great experience as it taught me new skills that I can apply to all aspects of life and it strengthened other life skills such as leadership. The trip was also great as we were shown the beauty of God’s creations and it helped strengthen and create new friendships along the way.

Karen Smith - An amazing challenging and picturesque adventure! Wow was often on our lips.
Every step lead us to another spectacular view that was such a beautiful reminder of the greatness of our God and the beauty of the world He made for us to enjoy, all so that we would look and see Him.
“For ever since the world was created, people have seen the earth and sky. Through everything God made, they can clearly see his invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature. So they have no excuse for not knowing God.”
Romans 1:20 NLT

Marie-Louise FitzGerald - If you like adventure and pushing yourself past your supposed physical endurance, love the wide open spaces, enjoy a challenge, don’t mind walking 20 kilometres in severe gale force winds above the tree line, sleeping in close proximity to people you’ve never met before in huts with cold running water but no showers then walking two of NZ’s Great Walks is for you. It is an adrenaline junkie’s dream. You will learn new things about yourself and others in your team and appreciate anew the beauty and perfection of the natural world God created and the pleasure of being part of a team. D of E is a fantastic opportunity and Mr Lees and Mrs O’Neil put together a thorough well-constructed program containing stretching, daunting physical elements and very cool elements of zip lines, mountain biking, shot over jet boats and riding the luge.

Bronwyn O’Neil - It has been wonderful to see the mental endurance of the students increase, through the challenges that this journey presents. Leadership skills have also developed with each student being allocated times to lead and make decisions for the group. Each student has been challenged to reach new heights physically and emotionally during the trip.

Colin Lees – Duke of Edinburgh is so much more than people going out camping. It is all about developing character – traits like resilience, mental toughness, determination, curiosity, creativity and problem solving. Throughout this trip, we have seen the students grow in these characteristics and to come face to face with the amazing creativity and awesome power of almighty God.


 

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