“Coming together is a beginning. Keeping together is progress. Working together is success.” -Henry Ford-
Amidst a global pandemic, our lifestyle has become completely virtual and human interactions have immensely reduced. This was when the current board of officials for the new Rotaract year 2021-22 was appointed. They had been involved in distant learning in their whole first year, while all initiatives done by the club until very recently were also either virtual or semi-virtual, restricting physical contact or any sort of gathering among the members of the club. Even after the initiation of physical projects, gatherings were limited and also, the opportunities they had to get to know each other personally and make friendships were least if not nil.
In an attempt to overcome this issue, the dire need for an outing for the board of officials for the year 2021-22 arose. Therefore, as the leaders of the club moved forward, a better understanding and a friendship among them were essential to have a successful year while enjoying the teamwork and fulfilling their duties. Lider was initiated with the aim of overcoming these issues and it took place in the CHE Adventure park. CHE, which stands for Collaborative Human Empowerment, is an outbound training provider located in Hanwella. To all of us, who had been away from physical activities for nearly two years, this served as an opportunity to learn leadership skills, work as a team and collect a whole new bunch of experiences.
On the 20th of November, 2021 early in the morning, with much anticipation, most of us got together at the university premises from where the bus began its journey to the CHE adventure park at Hanwella. The bus ride was certainly very happening as we sang and danced while having our breakfast as well. After reaching the adventure park, the day kicked off with a series of warm-up exercises followed by a game of “Simon says…”, which made us realize that the day was going to be very exciting and maybe a little tiring. Next came the rifle shooting, archery and zipline, which were a few of the most thrilling experiences that we all undoubtedly enjoyed. Rifle shooting got interesting as the girls aced at it bringing out the admirable marksmanship within them.
The two minute journey along the zipline, more than 20m above the ground with the breeze hitting my face, was my favourite as it gave me a much needed surge of adrenaline rush. Prior to lunch we all got together at our tents and had a melodious bonding time relaxing, singing songs and dancing, which surely made us warm to each other. Following lunch, everyone was impatient to go ahead to the next activity, water rafting. Water rafting was yet another novel experience for most of us, who had an amusing time trying to row the raft, using all our strength and which I personally believe highlighted the impact of teamwork and unity, which is a very important trait to all of us as the board of officials of the club.
As we neared the end of the day, to the last and much awaited session of paintballing, all of us were certainly very excited. Initially, we were given a brief discourse on the dos and don’ts of paintballing, which slightly freaked us out. Clothed in military-like costumes, separated into four teams, hiding among trees, carrying a gun weighing almost 2kg, all of us had an absolutely rip-roaring time shooting paintballs at our opponent teams, working as a team to bring victory to our gang.
The action-packed day came to an end as we finished paintballing. Undoubtedly all of us immensely enjoyed the day as we added a great deal of memories to our Rotaract diaries while getting to know each other personally and developing lifelong friendships. The project surely strengthened the bond, friendship, leadership qualities as well as teamwork within the board significantly proving that together we can achieve greater milestones as we all “Unite for a better world”.
By Rtr. Oshadi Tennakoon