GGMTB Kids group, camp at Reviersonderend 20-22 February 2015
The idea was initiated in October 2014 by Marchel Abrahams, one of three GGMTB's dedicated guides who give up their spare time to ride with the children from our local community.
It was an ambitious plan and entailed riding 28 km’s from Greyton to a campsite near Reviersonderend on a Friday, an 8 km ride to the town and back on Saturday and a return journey of another 28km’s to Greyton on the Sunday. Supported by guides Peet Pietersen and Taswill (also our trusty technical assistant) the plan became a project…..
All 16 children from the “Thursday” riding group were invited…..none had ever cycled this far or even been on a camping trip…..and of course there was no way to contain their excitement, so it was channelled into an energetic training programme. Every week the riding distance and elevation challenges were increased and in January this year these kids could be seen riding up to the bench and barreling down “bone shaker”, one of our local challenging single tracks. Safety training received special attention, especially on our gravel roads…single file, following distance, no overtaking and courtesy towards other riders are non negotiable rules which received maticulous training and attention.
Volunteers assisted with the camping logistics and buying of the food…….preparing to feed 16 hungry children and their guides takes a fair amount of menu planning and shopping!
Then it all became a reality…. on 20 February at 14:30 the children and their 3 guides lined up for the ride of their dreams. Accompanied by 2 support vehicles they departed form Greyton for Reviersonderend, exactly 2 and a half hours and 28 km's later they arrived at the campsite… where another adventure began!!
Below a blog written by Marchel Abrahams, the guide who had the vision…...
"....on the 20 February 2015 we
took 16 children only boys to a camp at
Riviersonderend,Khomeesdrif,not only had we noticed the excitement of
camping but also the urge in the children to break away from their
usual environment. At first we had to set some rules which the most
important one was discipline and the second one was family,everything
we had done was base on family...at camp I experienced a lot of
different characters and emotions.we just had a great
weekend,somethings I had really enjoyed watching was to see all the boys
were bonding with one another,sharing,looking after each
other...example we decided that we will have milkshakes in the village
at caltex garage in Reviersonderend and we had discover that not everyone in the group had enough money for a milkshake. Because of the family we had been
attach to the boys decide that they will help the person that had not
enough money and that was really a matter that had bring tears to my
eyes.We had 3 groups during the camp. After the camp I
ask the boys what they had learn...one actually said to me is to take
care of each and other,one said he learn to eat a lot,and one boy say
to care for someone which is not your family as your family and thats
just a few to mention,cause words cant really explain the gratitude we
have.thank you to everyone that had make this camp a huge
success. Lastly and this i want to highlight this,we had receive a huge
compliment from the campers and also the owner of the camping
site,they said that they had in ages not see such a disciplined bunch
of riders,everything they had done was in order, the way they ride, the
way they speak and also they way they treat the other campers. And that
make us as the adults,organisers,sponsors,supporters and I know the
committee very proud. You go boys, it was great to camp with you and i
know Oom Peet and Taswill will agree with me...also again to oom peet
and taswill you guys were great. Also the persons not mentioned thank you