Angmering students say Rotary Young Leadership Awards programme changed their outlook

Confidence, leadership skills and new friends were just some of the benefits gained by two girls from The Angmering School on the Rotary Young Leadership Awards programme.

Dikaxiha Rajandran and Catherine Topham were sponsored by Littlehampton Rotary Club for the week-long adventure in the Surrey Hills.

Dikaxiha Rajandran, left, and Catherine Topham with club president Bruce Green

Dikaxiha Rajandran, left, and Catherine Topham with club president Bruce Green

They gave members an insight into their experience last week, when they were guest speakers at the regular Tuesday evening meeting.

The girls said they arrived full of trepidation, not knowing what to expect, but by the end, their parents more or less had to drag them away.

They both felt they had gained much from the weekend. It gave them a different outlook on life, they gained confidence and learned leadership skills.

Dikaxiha wants to go into medicine, while Catherine is interested in sport, and both said the awards would help in their future careers.

Rosemary Green, chairman of the club’s youth and vocational committee, gave the vote of thanks, telling the girls it was evident the club had received value for money in sending them to RYLA 2018.

There were about 25 young people aged 13 to 17, who were split into teams from the start.

One challenge was to stand on a large plastic sheet on the ground then turn it over without getting off, something the girls achieved with a lot of fun and laughter. Picking up a box without using hands caused more giggles.

Other activities through the week included climbing, abseiling, kayaking and raft building.

Catherine said she was scared of heights and climbing on a long rope ladder was scary for her, as she was waving around on it.

Trips out included a visit to London to see the musical Kinky Boots and a 15-mile hike to Headley Court, the former forces medical rehabilitation centre.

The hike took just over four hours and Dikaxiha said she returned muddy up to her knees but it was great fun.

When the time came to say goodbye, there were tears but the girls said they had made great friends and had kept in touch with many of the group.

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