14 Nov Group Leader Interview – Tash
When Started: March 2012
Position Held: Senior Instructor
Background: Worked and volunteered at a comprehensive school, assisting in PE classes. I spent two summers working at a summer camp in North Carolina, whilst at the University of Worcester; where I achieved a first class BSc (Hons) in Outdoor Leadership and Management
Hobbies / Interests: I’m a big rugby fan and I’m Welsh, so rugby is in my blood. I currently spend most of my time out walking my puppy, playing around with my camera or attempting to play my guitar. I enjoy snorkelling, surfing, camp fires, ghyll scrambling, drawing and learning new things.
What centre do you work at and what’s great about where you live?
I work at Barhaugh Hall, Alston. The best thing about the area is it’s extremely beautiful. In the winter we can get quite a lot of snow, so sledging, skiing and boarding is always an option at the local ski slope.
Why did you choose Robinwood?
To gain experience working with children and to make a positive difference developing them, but also the opportunity for personal growth.
What’s your favourite thing about working for Robinwood?
Its a full time, permanent job with excellent holidays and opportunities to take seasons off, which allow staff to travel and work abroad.
What’s the Coolest part of your job?
Alongside working with the visiting school we get to join various teams such as; well being, social responsibility, green team, robust, training, food, recruitment, centre presentation etc. There’s so many teams, which allow you to utilise a variety of skills you may already have or allow you to gain and develop skills you don’t currently have.
What is it like working with 7-11 year olds?
It’s very interesting, 7-11 year olds are very imaginative and creative, which allows us to really use storytelling and imagination in our problem solving sessions.
Describe your first group in 5 words.
Energetic, busy, fun, new challenge
What’s the funniest thing a child has said?
‘Is the stream walk indoors?’
What’s been your funniest moment?
Training. You spend a lot of time with your intake and everyone becomes really close very quickly. Training was hilarious, getting to run around acting like a 10 year old and going on all sessions. We had a great time.
What is your favourite session to run and why?
Caving. It’s a chance for the children to explore and just play, like children should. Playing numerous games with some educational aspects. It’s also an excellent time to build rapport with your teachers.
Have you been on any social events and what were they like?
I used to be on the social team and the socials were always fun. We run a lot of socials for everyone: From Cowboy fancy dress with line dancing and an automated bull, 80’s fancy dress ‘boat that rocked’ party, to day trips to Blackpool, formal dress dinners in a castle, ice hockey, ice curling and so much more.
Have you tried anything new since starting Robinwood?
I’ve learnt some basic sign language from working with a young girl who had hearing impairments. I also went on two bush craft overnight events where we successfully managed fire by friction, plant identification, shelter building and we even ate a fish eye (as a source of fresh water).
What extra training have you done since joining Robinwood and is there more you plan to do?
I completed an NVQ L3 in management, with some elements of neuro-linguistic programming, which was incredibly interesting and I am hoping to use training allowance to do more. I am also looking to become a First Aid trainer in the new year.
What advice would you give to someone considering applying?
It’s a great opportunity to help others develop but also to learn a lot about yourself. You can make a really positive difference in the lives of 7-11 year olds. So if you’re interested in developing children and working partly in an outdoor setting, even if you don’t have outdoor experience- it doesn’t matter, APPLY. You’ll be taught all the technical stuff you need to know and we’re a team so we’ll be here to support you along the way.
It's a great opportunity to help others develop but also to learn a lot about yourself.