In each and every workshop there has been a positive energy in the room and hands in the air to volunteer regardless of what task is proposed. For me personally it has been a challenging start simply because I have been away from the heart of the action due to other work commitments (Inspiration for Leisure, Denmark) and annual leave- however I can see that without a doubt the New Horizons 2015 team are a team that are determined and self-sufficient regardless of circumstances.
While I have been away the team have been supported greatly by Laura Pike and Norma Rice who have been pulling out all the stops to get New Horizons publicised as much as possible and also to get the cash tins rattling with donations and sponsorship to get us to Colombia. Over the past few weeks our participants have featured on Sunlight radio, held a stand and sold cakes at the Medway Youth Trust parents evening at Dickins world and participated in the Mote Park Dragon Boat race event in Maidstone. They are busy putting together presentations and pitches to approach local businesses and organisations with, they are researching grants to apply for and they are plotting their next big event that they can host or take part in...all with a view to spreading the word about their participation in the New Horizons programme and getting the much needed sponsorship they require. This week I will also be delighted to introduce the team to a new member of the New Horizons staff-Catherine who will take up her role as the International Youth Development Worker this Thursday. Catherine has a fantastic catalogue of experience in fundraising and in working internationally and her passion and enthusiasm for the New Horizons programme is evident. 
International Social Action is at the heart of the New Horizons programme and it is a new and exciting step for Medway Youth Trust. The challenge ahead of our New Horizons group to hit their fundraising target by October is very real but I know that they can do it and that every cake sold, pitch delivered and mile sponsored will be worth it. Colombia is an amazing country with fascinating, warm and welcoming people and I am so inspired by the possibilities that lie ahead of our young people when we go there. Having spent a week in Denmark at the Erasmus +, Inspiration for Leisure programme, it was an honour to see the positive impact that social interaction with peers from other countries can have on young people from Medway. People are often at their best when challenged and I was blown away by the capabilities and confidence demonstrated by our cohort in Denmark. For us, Colombia is next and I cannot wait to see what it has in store for us!!