Wilderness Weekly 12.29.18

Goannas:  This week the boys had the opportunity to honor two students with tokens and give a trail name. We had a big Holiday feast with lots of snacks and fun games. The boys enjoyed a “White Christmas” which many have never experienced. We all worked together to assist two newer students to complete first camp. The group worked on growing their relationships through group discussions centered around bullying, family ties, and vision for the future. One of the primary focus this week for the Gnoannas centered around substance abuse, identifying underlying reasons the rests at the core, and finding other more healthier ways to cope with sadness and depression.

Gnowees:  The group hiked 14 miles this week. We had a belated Hanukah celebration followed by a Christmas celebration complete with ham and stuffing and cookies, pie, and hot chocolate. We enjoyed ourselves by decorating a tree and going sledding. One special Gnowee received the trail name, Effervescent Emerald. A couple Gnowees were honored with the Peace Walker and Giver tokens. The girls worked hard on their busting this week and were creative with their baking skills.

Ulurus: The Ulurus had a week full of excitement. Three of the senior members of the group said farewell as they moved on to the next chapter in their lives, leaving the remaining members of the group to step up and learn how to thrive under new challenges and circumstances. The group had a ceremonious send off during the winter solstice, watching the sunset and having a bonfire as they let go of parts of them they wanted to leave behind and envisioned goals for the new season. The group also had a special holiday celebration. The group enjoyed hot cocoa, ham, and pie! A big therapeutic theme this week was perspective, especially important when spending Christmas in the desert. Moods went from low to high as Christmas approached and the group pulled together and their positive mindsets set themselves up for success in enjoying a holiday they all described as one they would “never forget”.

Dingoes: The Dingoes were adventurous this week with hikes and skills. Three pack hikes allowed the group to grow substantially in teamwork and managing through difficult emotions. While day hikes through sage brush fields allowed for fire making set building, with another hike to willow trees to make items such as pack frames and spoons. The students also celebrated a special holiday with ham, pies, and stuffing. This day allowed the group to gather, cook together, and get to know each other while also spending time doing beadwork and working on their willow projects.

Therapeutically the group discussed how extreme negative words effect their own emotions and those around them. All the while, also being able to thrive and manage in the colder weather with difficult emotions. The group also moved through many dynamics with group members moving on to new schools and gaining new members.

*”Christmas Tree” Bora Ground*


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