Monday, 9 March 2009

Changeover 1 - Day 1

We had an awesome changeover on the 3rd-5th of March, with all groups arriving safely, on time, and with plenty of things to tell each other!

But before they arrived, Fieldbase staff had plenty to do. 

Mac, our Country Programme Manager, helped everyone with each of their jobs, in between sorting out changeover bags. 

Admin Val and explorer Georgia went round the rooms at Borneo Paradise, where changeover was, and put up labels on each of the doors to say who'd be sleeping where. Val was also busy with setting up the Raleigh shop - the venturers and volunteer project managers alike go crazy shopping for fizzy drinks and chocolates after being 'out there' for 19 days. The money raised from shop sales go towards the HCV funds, which help allow Host Country Venturers take part in Raleigh expeditions.

Amy, the Deputy Programme Manager, was mainly on the phone with all the Alpha groups, getting updated about their whereabouts and making sure their transport was getting them where they needed to be. Amy was also busy sorting kit out for 65 venturers and set up the temporary office in the room they (Borneo Paradise) call the BDI room and we (Raleigh folk) dub the Beady Eye room. 

Elda, our Finance superwoman was busy getting out and sorting the venturers' valuables envelopes and preparing the 'bank' for the group. 

Bev (Medic) and Esme (Phase 1 Logs) were back at Fieldbase, sorting out new medical kits for each Alpha Groups. 

Dave (Photographer) and Steph (Logs) got busy preparing equipment and food, dividing them into separate groups for each of the Alpha groups. 

Jim (Country Director), Dave (Photographer) and Yolanda (me, Comms Officer & 'RSC' Coordinator) had the blog to put up on the walls - and because you (our blog readers) were so fabulous with keeping in touch through the blog, we had five blog posts in spread out in six sheets per row and eighteen and a half rows! 

I, with the help of Val and Bev, also put together our own little newsletter, which we call the Sabah Sun, and printed out and distributed copies for everyone to read when they arrived. The Sabah Sun has news, gossip, sudoku and all sorts of other entertaining things to update all the venturers and PMs about the goings-on in Alpha groups that are not their own.

After the briefing on the bus, they got themselves sorted out, cleaned and ready for what was to come on Day 1 of changeover - debriefings, briefings, catching up with friends, reading the blog, phoning, interneting, dinner that didn't come out of Raleigh rations and skits!

In the skits, each group prepares a little song or a skit that tells a story about their Phase 1. There's always lots of laughs because of the skits, sometimes there's confusion and more often than not, randomness, but The Skits are definitely a load of fun for everyone! The Skits is hosted by Mac and there's a panel of judges, much like American Idol or Britain's Got Talent, who determine the best skit, and the group with the best skit wins a prize. 

It was such a pleasure to see everyone together in one place again, to hear how much fun their first phase was and to see how enthusiastic they were about their experience so far! 

That's all for Day 1; a post on Day 2 and 3 to follow next!

p.s. The blog wall was very, very popular with everyone; we heard squealing and yay-ing and many other sounds of joy and excitement when they were standing in front of the blog wall, reading messages from friends and family. 

Thank you all so much for you messages!


Anonymous said...

For Matthijs Ben ontzettend benieuwd wat nu je nieuw groep is,heten jullie weer Alpha ..... P.+ik bellen veel om jou en Emily op de foto's te vinden. De wijn is Zat. aangekomen: nu proeven!!Hier ijskoude wind, soms ineens wel lekker; sneeuwklokjes zijn in volle bloei.narcissen nog niet! .wees voorzichtig met al die enge insecten op de trek!! Love Omie

Mark said...

Hi Lottie (alpha 1), its dad again. I presume you have now changed over so I hope you are enjoying the next phase as much as the first one.

Tom and mum are busy trying to find us somewhere to live in Melbourne. They have made very good friends with Pod (uncle Paul's friend) and his wife and family who have been very helpful and friendly. They been out to dinner with them and to a birthday party and they've been ferrying them around to see the different areas in their car.

I think mum and Tom are really getting to like the place and some of the locations sound fabulous, especially the beaches. H

owever this morning part of the city had a power cut and mum was locked out and Tom was locked in and its a bank holiday so few people were around. They managed to get sorted though. You'll be pleased to hear they've also had one earthquake so far!

I have been VERY busy in the house and in Gordon Street and I've still got over 20 things on my to-do list. I will probably be working for the next 2 weekends so it will be tricky to fit things in. In about a week's time I will buy my last monthly season ticket which will make moving there seem a little closer.

Gordon Street is now empty and I'm having a new bathroom suite put in there and central heating and Uri is repainting from top to bottom.

At home we had our first renter move in at the weekend (to Tom's room). John has also now moved in. Hopefully we'll get a couple more rooms rented soon. I have now moved into your room - its all a bit confusing!

You'll be pleased to hear I have ported your mobile to a PAYG phone so you won't lose your number.

Anyway, hope you are having a fab time and are looking forward to the fun bit :-)

All my love,


Pien said...

Lieve Matthijs,
heb net samen met Omie zitten kijken naar de foto's van change-over day 1. Ik Hoop dat er snel nog meer foto's komen, o.a. met de indeling van jullie volgende project groepen? Kan ik zien wie jij of wie jou de jungle mee in sleept, hi hi. Er staan heel erg leuke foto's van vorige tocht bij, geeft een goed beeld wat jullie gaan zien en aantreffen.
Zo te zien groeit je haar nog niet heel erg snel en heb je nog geen hanekam, wel erg geestig om te zien bij de anderen. Ben ontzettend benieuwd naar alle nieuwe ervaringen. Pap heeft per post informatie gestuurd over het gebdie waar jullei eventueel naar toe willen, hopelijk bereikt je dat bij de 2e change-over.
Nog steeds geen baby bij C. , die zit gewoon tevreden in die buik. Ik hou je op de hoogte,
liefs Pien

Pien said...

Lieve Emilie en matthijs,

ik vergeet iedere keer de groetjes aan Emilie te doen, heel stom. Dus hiebij! Er zijn ontzettend leuke foto's van Emilie en haar kinderklas; de pedagoge in spee!
liefs Pien

strietman said...

Lieve Youp, eindelijk je staat op de foto!!!, bij de groepen van het volgende bloq. De groep ziet er gezellig uit, kan weer niet wachten om wat van je te horen. Ben echt heel benieuwd hoe jullie het hebben, heeft Joost al zijn Rambo mes gebruikt. Jullie zullen best veel lol hebben, dag lieverd, love you XXX