Photo comp: Charlotte Skahill, Australia
Charlotte Skahill
Award Level:
Favourite memory of the Award:
My favourite memory of the award was the Adventurous Journey. Earlier last year, I had a lot of changes, from moving 4,000 km across the county, to skipping year 8 straight into year 10. I'm not the most confident person so coming to a new school, especially one with a different curriculum, was really hard. But, in a way, participating in the award along with the rest of the class, really helped me to fit in. From surfing together to learning fire and rescue techniques, but the best part of all was the three-day hiking/canoeing expedition. I had so much fun with the rest of the class, and I think it really helps a class come together, especially in the terms of morale. I really only felt comfortable with two or three people in my class, but while we were doing the award, you get to see people in a different light. I know I definitely realised some people, who I originally pegged as "not my type", but they proved me wrong as we bonded over the shared experience of pain, beauty and excitement. I loved how on our last day, it was so cold that there was mist everywhere, and there was so much of it that it looked like it was out of a fantasy world! Then the sunrise over the trees as it hit the mist made it the most magical canoeing experience I think I'll ever have : ) I loved how when we got back from the expeditions, we had all these little jokes and stories we could tell people, and things we could say that would make everyone burst out laughing. So, all in all, I have two favourite memories of the award. 1. Completing the adventurous journey with my class to bring us closer as a group of friends. 2. Being able to come back with stories and jokes from things that happened on the trip, and seeing the reactions of everyone busting into tears from laughing so hard! : )
Biggest challenge from doing the Award:
While it was also my favourite memory of my Duke of Ed, the three-day adventurous Journey was probably my biggest challenge. I'd never really done anything like it before with anyone but close family, so it was pretty nerve-racking, especially going with people I didn't know all that well. As well as that, I wasn't sure I'd be able to physically complete it, let alone emotionally. There were definitely a lot of nerves before we went and during the adventurous journey, and I almost didn't go. It was only because my parents 'insisted', but now, being on the other side of it, I'm so glad that I did. I would have really regretted it if I hadn't gone, and I'm so happy that I did. And even though it was a good 10 months or so ago, we still laugh our heads off when we think about the memories we shared.
Have you continued any of your Award activities? If so, what:
I have definitely continued some of my activities. I do Tae Kown DO, and I think it's incredibly important for girls nowadays to learn to defend themselves. Doing martial arts, keeps you fit, and flexible, with amazing reaction times which make you feel really safe when you are out and about, especially if you are alone.
Tell us the story behind your photo:
It was our last day doing our 3-day expedition as a class, and we were all tired and sore, but seriously excited about finishing the last leg of our trip. It was early morning, maybe 7 - 7:30 am, and it was a bit chilly, which made some of the most magical mist I've ever seen. The sun was just coming over the valley walls and hitting the water which is one of the reasons I know it's going to be a memory that will stay with me forever. It was just before we were about to leave when my photography teacher realised what a perfect photo the canoes lined up so perfectly could make. It was such a lucky shot and it really captured just how peaceful the bush was. It's one of my favourite photos I've seen him take, and he's taken thousands, and it is one of the reasons I will always remember that moment.
Award Role: