Wild Ones celebrates four years
PCYC repairs force group to take a break
THEY were started four years ago and, in that time, the Wild Ones has become one of the most successful youth programs in the Whitsundays.
Celebrating their fourth birthday on April 12, they have had to take a break as their headquarters, the Whitsunday PCYC, awaits repairs.
While there will be a hiatus in the 8-11 year old program, the Wild Ones Youth Management Team will continue.
Wild Ones co-ordinator Ron Petterson said it had been a rewarding four years.
“The original concept was that there was no scouts at the time and I was looking for something for my boys to do,” he said. “The PCYC had just done a study on the things missing in the community and the need for a youth group came up.
“Between Sergeant John Dickinson and I, we decided to start an adventure, camping, hiking, youth group.
“I grabbed my two boys and some other friends and the first night we had 32 kids show up.”
Last year the group peaked with 90 local kids and today some of the original Wild Ones still attend. They learn a range of skills from team building to camping and how to work in the community.
Mr Petterson said the best thing about the program was the community’s response.
“We’ve had a massive amount of community support throughout the years from businesses donating right through to helping us with our uniforms to transport, to local owners providing food for camps, the army even let us come on base,” he said.
“Also the parents and volunteers have given us a great team that come in every week and help it come together.
“I’ve been watching these kids grow up and there’s so much to be proud of.”
Mr Petterson said it would only be a temporary break.
“It’s been a great ride for the last five years and as soon as the PCYC is open it will be great to get back to normal for bigger and better things,” he said.
WILD DAY: Wild Ones enjoyed a day at YMT Lavarack Barracks in Townsville last year.
BIG BIRTHDAY: The Wild Ones celebrate thier third birthday at the PCYC in 2016.
Making a human pyramid at a Wild Ones’ trip in 2014.