Mittagundi Adolescent Camp

An adolescent sibling supported by Very Special Kids reflects on their unique experience at Mittagundi.

For one amazing week, sixteen adolescents got to experience the Mittagundi Winter Program. The journey started with a six hour bus ride up to Mittagundi, which took us through rolling hills, rural farmland and mountainous outback Australia. After arriving at the farm we met the lovely Mittagundi staff and were given a tour of the four hundred acre site.

For the next three days, we were given opportunities to get an authentic taste of farm life. We took part in farm work such as bushwhacking, woodchopping, tending to the livestock, milking the cows and I can’t forget putting on an apron and cooking up delicious farm tucker for everyone to enjoy! There is satisfaction felt when completing farm tasks – a sense of self-accomplishment and connection to nature, not always able to be felt in the everyday suburban world.

On the third afternoon of camp, we packed our bags with our snow and ski gear, and the next morning departed Mittagundi for the six kilometre trek to the campsite. The time spent in the snow was truly magical; the sight of the immense star filled sky was breathtaking. The warmth brought by much needed hot cocoa and the conversations and laughter shared with new and old friends, made the cold bite appear to disappear.

The  next day, we were given the opportunity to ski in gorgeous snow laden hills. This was most definitely an experience I won’t forget any time soon. After a much talked about snowball fight, hot dinner and a good night’s rest, we were ready for the next morning’s journey back to the farm, where our anticipated and oh so delicious roast dinner awaited us.

The coming together of the VSK and Mittagundi communities created a safe and supportive environment, where we were able to push our personal limits for both physical and mental growth. For me the most memorable part of the camp, was the roaring campfire over which we shared the tradition of trading spooky and scary stories.

On the final day of camp, we said our thank yous and last goodbyes to the brilliant Mittagundi staff, and left with treasured memories, newly learnt skills, newly made friendships, and as new members of the Mittagundi family. For this happy camper, Mittagundi was a refreshing interval from the everyday demands of the world. Thank you to VSK and the Mittagundi staff for making this such an amazing experience.