More than 300 children and 70 volunteers from across the UK embarked on a three-day residential trip to Condover Hall in Shropshire from 14 to 17 April 2017. The trip was designed to build self-confidence and leadership skills and required many months of meticulous planning.

During their stay, the delegates were challenged with more than 10 different activities, all devised to help the children harness their abilities and overcome personal fears. The activities included the zip wire, Jacob’s Ladder, the gladiator wall, abseiling, the aerial trek, climbing, archery and low ropes.

Morning sessions began with samuh puja where children learned to enhance their daily morning prayers. Evening activities after dinner included a camp fire, nocturnal safari and run-around quiz. Sadhus also conducted a short evening sabha wherein everyone performed arti and cheshta together.

After the activities on the final day, many of the children departed to BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir, Wellingborough to join in the annual prayers for world peace and harmony.

The trip proved both extremely formative and enjoyable for the children, providing many moments of fun and laughter as well invaluable learning and lasting memories.

One young girl, aged 12, wrote, “I used to be afraid of heights but with encouragement from my friends, I completed the aerial trek.”

A parent added, “Amazing! It makes me want to reverse time and be a child again. Thank you to all the volunteers for creating such great memories for our children. These events really help them get out of their shell and grow.”

Yogi Patel, one of the lead volunteers of the trip, echoed the same sentiments. He shared, “It was such an amazing trip. I learned so much from the children themselves and leave with many great memories. It is always a pleasure to see the children laughing and enjoying themselves, growing together. We’re already looking forward to the next one!”

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