School camp gives education in co-operation

What has 80 hands, 400 fingers, 398 toes (two are stubbed), 16 blisters and consumes 30 kilograms of potatoes, 37 loaves of toast bread and 20 litres of icecream?

Mistletoe Bay is our destination and after just 3 hours of walking along the Queen Charlotte Track, one of the many spectacular walks in our inspiring region, the Renwick School arrives.

The Village at Mistletoe Bay will be our home for the next five days, as we camp out in the sustainable eco village surrounded by native bush and wildlife. The ducks and weka are pleased to see us as it means there is lots of free food, as the kids eat outside on the expansive decks.

It really is an amazing venue, looking over the Sounds, that educates and highlights the very essence of what Marlborough is all about.


The new kitchen facilities are perfect for school groups and many eager hands make light work of the breakfast, lunch and dinner duties.

By the end of the day we are kayaking, bushwalking, learning about marine life and building survival shelters, and at night it is fun and games as forfeits are handed out and individuals perform for the group, based on what went wrong during the day.

What the kids have not understood yet is that it is all about teamwork. The mum and dad helpers get it, the teachers get it and all of those from the army and the many supporters and community groups that spent countless hours building and updating the sustainable kitchen and whare get it.

The kids are learning in a proactive environment that while it is important to be individuals, they also need to work together to ensure the whole team and class succeed.

Just like any small community, we are proving that Renwick School is setting the bar high for future generations.

Children need to be well educated and fed to survive in the big wide world.

I just can't remember having icecream on my school camp some 27 years ago!

The Marlborough Express