Perth Camp Dec 2022
- Climbing up a stack of crates to reach the hanging ball, and jumping off the top. This activity involved teamwork, communication and balance!!
- The indoor giant swing took our breath away. What a thrill getting hoisted up and pulling the cord to make yourself fall… eeek!
- Our peer mentors organised some fun ice breaker games and enjoyed connecting and supporting the kids during the activities and mealtimes.
- The egg-free meringues were a winner! For some of the campers it was their first time ever having meringue.
What we got up to
The Peer Mentors and staff arrived on Friday to prepare for the fun weekend ahead at Ern Halliday Recreation Camp. We were so excited to finally be running an Allergy 250K camp in Perth.
On Saturday morning we welcomed 13 campers and their families. It was a smooth check-in process, handing over medications to the nurses and chatting with the dietitians. We had 8 Peer Mentors on camp who led some fun games to warm us all up. The campers were allocated to blue and orange groups and led to their morning activities by the Ern Halliday camp leaders.
The indoor crate climbing challenge was to reach a ball hanging from the ceiling and build a crate structure strong enough to support the weight of someone climbing it. As the crate towers became higher, they became more wobbly and unstable so everyone had to reach up to reinforce the sides and stop it falling over. We had to listen out for ‘below’ being shouted, which meant crates were falling down! The other group did some outdoor archery, working hard to perfect their technique to hit the bullseye.
In the afternoon our volunteer health professionals chatted with the campers about managing their allergies. We were able to practice with some EpiPen and Anapen training devices and see a real one firing into an empty drink bottle. The campers had time with allergy specialists, allergy nurses, allergy dietitians and a psychologist to discuss everything and anything they wanted to about living with a food allergy.
It was suggested that we go down to the beach for an afternoon swim, and play in the sand, to which the campers replied with an emphatic ‘yes’! For dinner on Saturday evening we had deconstructed nachos which was a Mexican beans and mince beef mixture with corn chips on the side and salad. Dessert was apple crumble and berry sorbet. Lots of campers went up for seconds. The campers settled into their bunk beds, excitedly talking about the day’s events and asking what we would be doing tomorrow.
After packing up our sleeping bags, we started Sunday with a cooked breakfast of bacon, tomatoes and mushroom, and a selection of cereals. The morning activities were the giant swing and ultimate sports. Some of the kids had a go at taking a shot of the basketball hoop while swinging from the giant swing – skill! We had morning tea delivered to the oval so we could spend longer on the activities. Before we knew it, it was time for lunch. Nobody was ready to go home, the camp had gone so fast and we all had such a blast. We gave a round of applause to the allergy dietitians who had successfully managed 37 different food allergies as well food intolerances and dietary requirements, and kept us really well fed over the two days.
The Peer Mentors are really integral to our camps and the younger teens really enjoy having them around. After the campers had left, the Peer Mentors spent the afternoon at Rottnest Island as part of their training and to reflect and discuss the camp.