During their 140th Anniversary year, Mothers’ Union in the Norwich Diocese raised £5749 to be shared between a local project and MU worldwide
The local aim was to provide an adventure experience for children who, for whatever reason, may not have other opportunities for days out during the Easter school holiday.
“We enabled a group of 16 youngsters from St Francis, Heartsease to go in 2017, but otherwise had little take-up. So then we took the riskier step of taking over the Horstead Activity centre for a fixed date in 2018 so that parishes with only a few church children had the chance to send them to an event such as this, and the response was terrific.”
Felicity Randall, organiser of the Big Day Out takes up the story:
“We had an amazing day at the Horstead Activity Centre in April. 52 Children arrived full of anticipation. Some of the children were very confident and quite a few a little apprehensive. Everyone was soon allocated to one of four groups and off they went – to climb the tower; practice archery, stack crates (a bit puzzled about that one!) or canoe on the river.
“The day went like clockwork, all credit to the activity team at Horstead. No tears or tantrums, every child tried their very best and several surprised themselves with their achievements. Some had seconds and even thirds of the barbecue lunch.
The best way to hear about the Big Day Out is the children’s own words:
“I’m loving it; thank you!”
“The Zip Wire was the very best.”
“Everything is best!”
“I hate heights, but I really loved being on the Zip Wire!”
“ On the Zip Wire, I got to be like an alien spaceship.”
“We only got to know each other today, it was great.”
“You get to know how to paddle a canoe and it’s really fun. I nearly fell in!”
Some more responses came from the adults who stayed with their groups:
“Lovely to see children we don’t know very well really enjoying themselves”
“Brilliant! The children from my group are mixing well with everyone. It’s a great day”
“The quiet ones have come alive.”
“I couldn’t believe my daughter, who was very clingy when we arrived, actually took a full part in the Crate Stack”
In all, 68 children were funded and the Trustees have just allocated the remaining £2860 to go to Mary Sumner House to be shared between the Overseas and Relief Funds, and the Literacy and Financial Education Programme