At the end of July, members of North Downs Division traveled to Ireland to visit IGGNITE 2017, Ireland’s largest ever International Camp of the Irish Girl Guides held in Rockwell College, Cashel, Co. Tipperary.
A Leaders perspective
Friday 28th July 2017 and a group of 10 guides and 4 leaders set off at the crack of dawn on our Irish adventure looking for our very own pot of Girlguiding gold at the end of our rainbow.
We arrived early afternoon at our first home for 2 nights Sandymount Methodist Church hall on the out skirts of Dublin after a long journey involving a coach, airplane, airport bus, train and a taxis (just for our bags, we had to walk!). After giving ourselves a well-earned 30 min rest, off we set again for a trip to the shops to collect supplies and a walking tour of the local area around Sandymount bay before an early supper and an evening of putting the finishing touches to our “Camps got Talent” piece the “Kentipips take on Morris dancing!” we would perform at camp.
The next morning it’s an early bus into Dublin to catch the open top bus tour round to Kilmainham Gaol where we learnt about the Easter rising, then back on the bus tour into the centre of Dublin for some shopping, stopping off for lunch in the park on the way. The evening saw a fish and chip supper eaten on Sandymount green followed by a few of us heading out for a paddle in the sea.
Sunday and it’s another early start catching our coach to IGGNITE which is a story in its self about laid back Irish coach drivers but best left for another day, needless to say after a few fraught hours we made it to Rockwell College, Cashel County Tipperary our home for the next 7 days.
Like all these things I would not say the first day was easy at camp as we all struggled a little to find our feet with the Irish guides and leaders being the same but within 2 days you could not tell, who was English, Irish or one of the 9 other nationalities, everyone was mixing so well. We all had a fantastic week as proven by the girl’s comments at the end of this piece and were all disappointed when the time came to start our journey home.
Yet another early start (5.30 for some of us who struggled to pack the night before) and we are in a coach traveling back to Dublin with some Malaysian and Canadian groups, this time the coach driver is not so laid back, but that’s another long story. Arriving at Dublin International youth Hostel our last overnight stop, we dump our bags, eat lunch and head into Dublin centre for the afternoon. Now at this stage a few of us are just a little worn out having been on the go constantly for 9 days so we head back for an relaxing afternoon to re charge our batteries. The others with a little more stamina head out to the Leprechaun Museum before we all meet up for our final evening meal together.
Monday 7th August and we fly home with fantastic memories and lots more Girlguiding friends.
Views from the Guides
IGGNITE 2017, probably one of the best things we’ve ever done! We loved the opportunity to make international friends and go outside our comfort zones when it came to new people. Being in different subcamps, we all had varying experiences however all our activities were thoroughly enjoyable.
Louisa said her favourite experience was “meeting all the Guides from different nationalities and making friends for life” and Lottie said that her favourite parts were “when we jumped off the raft with our Irish friends and the silent disco with the senior branch from Glow 14”
If we had the chance to relive it…….we definitely would!
Lottie, Louisa, Olivia and Becky
IGGNITE 2017 was undeniably the best week of my summer holidays. I made some lifelong friends and memories such as being involved in sumo wrestling and a silent disco. However my favourite part of the camp was being told at the last minute about the overnight survival and having to zoom around on the golf buggy in order to fling my equipment into a bag and get onto the coach in time. It was very emotional to leave camp but I was soon happy again, whilst we visited the Leprechaun museum I was transformed into a Leprechaun and struggled to climb into the armchair! Getting a free rainbow pencil was also very exciting!
(At Camp) We went and did fun challenges and games, the games we did were rafting, canoeing, swimming, archery etc. During camp we had a silent disco, were you have to wear headphones and music will play through the headphones. At the leaving ceremony, there were lots and lots of tears and Instagram and Snapchat swaps.
We enjoyed the trip because it made an impact to us, we would definitely recommend it again. Thank you for giving us a lovely trip
Niamh, Naomi and Harriet
In rafting we wore life jackets and helmets. It was in the lake, everyone travelled across the lake in nines on a wooden raft to the centre raft. The centre raft has a small slide leading into the freezing cold lake and a ladder on either side of the raft. We had the option to jump into the water, which I had a fear of doing. In the end I managed to beat my fear and go into the lake.
Around the world in 150 minutes
In this activity you were randomly split into teams, it was a mini competition. The winner was the team who got the most points, each activity was worth a different amount of points, the total amount of points a group could get was 200, mine and Naomi’s team got 199 points and became the winners. The mini games ranged from matching the flag to the correct country to tent pitching one handed.