Bluelight Boot-Camp Experience

John Paul II High School students attend Burnham Military Camp

On the 20th of September two John Paul II Students along with other Greymouth students, attended the Bluelight Boot-camp, which was held at the Burnham Military Camp. The camp is a one week residential programme run by the New Zealand Defence Force. It focuses on leadership training, practical skills, self-confidence and leaderless tasks. Each year, John Paul II has the opportunity to send students on this course, places are limited so sometimes we can only send one student. We were able to send two students on the September course - Mikaere Whitcombe and Phoenix Smith. 

Our daily routine involved waking up at 6am, having a shower and being dressed and ready for room inspection.  After this we had to  form up outside on the parade ground, and march to breakfast. Following breakfast we marched back to our dorms to tidy up hallways and ablutions. Then we were briefed on the days activities, which took place from about 9am till 12pm.  After this we would have a Personal Training session from about 1pm till 3pm. Finally, we went back to the dorms for showers and back out onto the parade ground for marching practice until dinner time at 5:30pm.

On the Wednesday we went on a mountain bike ride along trails to McLeans Island. We followed the tracks around and I would have enjoyed it more if I had a better seat on my bike. After the mountain bike ride we went to have a look at the Antarctic Centre. The penguins were really cool to see, because for some of us we had never seen any before.

On Thursday we went to Adrenaline forest, which included activities like climbing, wires, ropes, and flying foxes. I went down early because I'm scared of heights, but I still really enjoyed it because of the rush and it was good in small doses.

I learnt how to work together as a team, and to be confident when making decisions as a leader.

I had an awesome time meeting new people, learning new things and pushed myself out of my comfort zone, and overall had a great time. I would also definitely recommend this course for someone who likes to be pushed out of their comfort zones and enjoys working with others.

A big thank you to Robbie Barrow who accompanied us on this adventure.

By Mikaere Whitcombe (Yr 12)