I am writing to you in order to pass on the email that I received from Ben Maxfield regarding the recent DofE expedition. I am sure you will agree that it is very special.
“Would you pass this on to your headteacher (I’ve tried to copy in but it could be the wrong address) and perhaps he could make a bit of thing of this in assembly. Never in ten years of DofE expeditions and over 7000 participants have I come across team spirit like this.
On Saturday this weekend, a group of 7 girls reached camp on their DofE Bronze practice and announced that the poles for one of their tents had fallen off one of their bags. They identified where they think it happened on the map and we went back to look for them. After an hour of looking in the field and an extra few km walking, I asked them what they think they could do about it… (Important to note that this has happened before and groups have always asked, ‘is there a spare set?.
However, this group of girls was different, they gathered themselves together with no adult intervention whatsoever and came up with a plan, they asked me and the assessor to take them to a local wood where they collected dead branches. They then went back to camp and made themselves a structure. This particular tent was only for 3 of the 7 in the group but that didn’t matter one bit, they all helped. They even offered to share the cost of a new set of poles between them. Not once did they blame the individual or leave her to take responsibility by herself. Team-work paid off and they made a brilliant tent for themselves. One of the instructors did of course set up another tent for them and as they settled in for the evening, we offered them the spare tent. But they refused to move, they wanted their night of adventure to continue and it just so happened they had a better night than anyone else on camp.
I don’t want to tell you who these girls are as I think they should perhaps stand up and surprise you all themselves. I rarely have time to write emails during expedition season but I really feel this holds an important message and says a lot about the students at The Corsham School. All of the students we have had along have been fantastic. There is a time lapse video on YouTube which shows their efficiency in the camp set up and set down (you will see ‘the’ structure in the video too). I believe the girls were year 9 but can’t be certain as there were some year 10 students there…Perhaps it’s worth sharing with both anyway. This is the exact reason I founded BXM Expeditions and value The DofE so much.”
I have personally congratulated the girls but thought you would enjoy the heartfelt appreciation from the organisers.