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Preparing to celebrate

Week 11: Preparing for the celebrations

I can’t believe we are already on Week 11! Today was all about preparing the mini troopers for their awards celebration where they have an opportunity to showcase their skills to parents and friends. Looking at them all standing so tall on parade, I felt quite proud to stand in front of them all. I am really looking forward to celebrating their achievements, but for now we must prepare.

Practice makes perfect

The mini troopers spent the first part of the morning practising their drill skills. Sgt Bussell took the mini troopers through the drill steps that will be expected from them on the night of their awards. After listening in to Sgt Bussell and his commands, the mini troopers took it in turns to stand at the front and take the rest of the group through drill exercises.

JT and SN showed just how much their confidence has improved by volunteering to come forward and lead the group. Both were impressive, projecting their voices nice and loudly and giving clear commands. “They have come such a long way since week 1”, remarked Sgt Bussell.

There is always time to learn new skills

After drill, the mini troopers joined me in the classroom for a recap of First aid. We went over all that had been learned over the last 10 weeks and introduced CPR. For one mini trooper this proved to be a little overwhelming. However, he had the confidence now to come forward and tell us that he was afraid of this situation occurring and asked if he could look away while I demonstrated the CPR process. I asked this mini trooper if he could help me with the Little Annie manikin, which we use in the demonstration. I explained how awesome it was and showed him how it worked. Now seeing the mechanical side of the Little Annie he was reassured and was able to assist me with the lesson. All the mini troopers got involved and practiced CPR.

“When I see anything on TV to do with blood or think about hospitals I feel faint”, said JM, “I’m the opposite of my sister who wants to be a nurse. If I needed to do CPR I think I could now, but hopefully I will have my sister nearby, unless it is my sister, then I just hope I don’t faint”.

Learning first aid

Proof is in the results

If you recall, on week 2 of the programme the mini troopers took part in my favourite week; Discovery Week and carried out the military fitness assessment. Today the mini troopers would repeat that assessment. We always hope to see improvement as it’s been 8 weeks in between Discovery week and now and our programmes are full of physical activity each week. They were clearly ready for the challenge, we had a room full of determined faces, all wanting to achieve a new personal best. Everyone impressed us, we watched them all push past their personal limits. One of our mini troopers suffers with her core stability and balance, particularly impressed us with her determination and her results where amazing. We always hope to see improvement in the results but the results today where just fantastic, we would love to share the results with you now, but we are keeping that under wraps until the awards night, when we will be revealing who has made it into the 300 club. One thing for sure though, is that each mini trooper should be extremely proud of their achievements.

Pushing through


Sgt Bussell and I now have the difficult task of looking through all the mini troopers’ progress and achievements, and selecting award winners. I say difficult, as this has been a wonderful group to watch grow week-in and week-out. Everyone has overcome personal fears and stepped into their growth zone. We have all enjoyed the last 11 weeks and we cannot wait to celebrate your mini trooper’s achievements next week.

Thank you once again for taking the time to read this. Tune in here, to hear all about the awards night.

If you would like to read previous week’s blogs, please click HERE

If you would like more information on how our programmes, support young people, please call us now 0845 548 5070 or click HERE

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Posted: 31, March, 2016
by Challenger Troop

Sgt Bowen is a Team Instructor in our North West Team. Formerly a Corporal in the Army Recruitment Team, after she had served for over ten years in the British Army Royal Corps of Transport where she was deployed to Germany, Northern Ireland, Kosovo, Iraq and the Falkland Islands. She is passionate about making a positive difference to the lives of the young people she works with.

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"Outdoor learning is giving them back their childhood wonder and curiosity at new things, allowing them to experience the marvel of discovery and the learning that comes from taking risks"

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