Friday, 14 January 2011

Meet the Team at Field Base!

Before we get any further into Expedition 11B, there are a few people you should probably meet. Introducing......(drumroll please).....the Field Base Team!

Mac McCarthy – Country Director
Bio: This is Mac’s second expedition as Country Director, a leadership role that his previous incarnation as an army sergeant makes him fully qualified to do! Before that he spent two years here in Borneo as the Country Programme Manager. Raleigh must be doing something right to keep him coming back time and again!
Key Responsibilities: “I am in overall charge of all Raleigh Borneo’s operations out here.”
Likes: Tea
Dislikes: No tea
Top expedition survival tip: 1. Put Talcum Powder in socks 2. Insert feet after a hard day’s trekking 3. Sit back and enjoy

Sarah Hoare – Country Programme Manager
Bio: Sarah has volunteered as a staff member on three expeditions out here in Borneo, as well as one as a Venturer in Chile. She now returns for the spring expedition in the prestigious role of Country Programme Manager.
Key Responsibilities: “My job involves the day to day running of the project, managing operational issues and supporting Mac in his role as Country Director.”
Likes: Craig McClachlan (a personal friend – sort of), cakes, sweets, chocolate (preferably all together), kitchen dancing
Dislikes: Getting up early in the morning, cold weather
Top Expedition Survival Tip: “Dry bags make great handbags to keep all your essentials in for days out in the Bravo Land Rover!”

Yolanda Graham – Recruitment, Support & Media Coordinator
Bio: Yo, who hails from Borneo, has been part of the permanent staff at Fieldbase for the past two years.
Key Responsibilities: “Recruitment of Host Country Venturers (HCVs), working with the comms officer to keep the media and public updated, providing local knowledge and operational support.”
Likes: Movies, salt and vinegar crisps, Hugh Jackman
Dislikes: The misuse of the apostrophe
Top Expedition Survival Tip: Smile; “If you don’t have a smile, I’ll give you one of mine” – Anonymous

Caroline Reid – Deputy Programme Manager
Bio: Caroline volunteered as a Project Manager on last summer’s Borneo expedition, and is now returning in the esteemed role of Deputy Programme Manager.
Key Responsibilities: “My role involves supporting Sarah and making sure things run smoothly at Field Base, from both a practical and logistical point of view.”
Likes: Tea, playing hockey and football, cheese
Dislikes: Uptight people/stressiness, mushrooms (“the devil’s fungus”)
Top Expedition Survival Tip: “Remain open minded.”

Chris Beer – Logistics Manager
Bio: Chris has been involved with Raleigh since he took part in an expedition as a venturer over 20 years ago and this is his second time as a volunteer manager.  His favourite hobbies are driving and fixing things.
Key Responsibilities: “Tools, improvements, overall management of the Logs team.”
Likes: Sailing, Borneo, cats (especially Pedro)
Dislikes: People who kill living creatures
Top Expedition Survival Tip: “You get out what you put in.”

Martin Brown – Logistics
Bio: Martin, who was formerly a machinist with the Renault Formula 1 team, has taken up a position on the logistics team here in Borneo.
Key Responsibilities: “Radio and vehicles.”
Likes: Flying, eating, travelling
Dislikes: Tea (don’t tell Mac!)
Top Expedition Survival Tip: “Learn your knots – and be nice to the Logs team!”

Daniel Brookes – Logistics
Bio: Dan, a reformed teacher now working with Medicins Sans Frontieres, has taken some time out to join the logs team here in Borneo.
Key Responsibilities: “Making sure everyone has food on project!”
Likes: Trifle, Pedro the cat (“Pedro trifle would be the best!” Er, okay Dan..)

Dislikes: Dunking (“It’s for peasants”), peasants

Top Expedition Survival Tip: “Stay alive!”

Helen Denny – Team Coach/Trek Leader/Project Manager
Bio: Helen, an experienced youth worker who volunteered on the last Raleigh Borneo expedition at the end of 2010, has had her arm twisted to return for a second stint in the jungle!

Key Responsibilities: “Being nice to people.  And helping with youth work training and skill development for the volunteer managers; offering information and advice on how to work with young people and coaching the volunteer managers in youth speak.”
Likes: Dairy Milk, sleeping in her hammock, working on her suntan
Dislikes: Sweating, manky mosquito bites, selfish people
Top Expedition Survival Tip: “Take nail polish and Milo 3-in-1s out on phase; there’s nothing better to boost morale!”

Kate McKeon – Administrator

Key Responsibilities: “I’m responsible for a lot of the general day to day tasks in the office, and will be also be working on the allocations for the projects.”
Bio: Kate was a Venturer on Raleigh’s India expedition in March 2010. She loved it so much she has returned to work as the Administrator on the Spring expedition in Borneo.
Likes: India, Borneo, tea, colours, air con
Dislikes: Bad spelling and grammar, stepping in Pedro the cat’s wee at Field Base
Top Expedition Survival Tip: “You can never have enough pyjama bottoms in the jungle.”

Belinda Whitehead – Comms Officer/Photographer
Bio: Belinda (that’s me!) has finally managed to escape the freezing clutches of the UK for a stint as Comms Officer/Photographer on Raleigh’s Spring expedition in Borneo, and can’t wait to get stuck in.

Key Responsibilities: Keeping the venturers and their friends and families back in the UK updated with news from all the different projects, writing the Sabah Sun newsletter, organizing the weekly Radio Raleigh broadcasts.
Likes: Chocolate, cheese, pink flowers, Pedro the cat, sunshine
Dislikes: Rush hour on the tube, selfish people, spiders, ABBA
Top Expedition Survival Tip: “You can never have too many wet wipes or too much DEET.”

Helen Turton – Artist/Photographer
Bio: Helen is escaping from the chaos of Secondary School teaching to be the first Raleigh Artist out here in Borneo. As well as making art, she is a musician and generally likes getting messy…..
Key Responsibilities: To be creative and to hopefully inspire all the Ventures to get creative too!
Likes: Running, being outdoors, playing music, printing ink and cheese.
Dislikes: All forms of paperwork and form filling.
Top Expedition Survival Tip: “A tin for matches and endless supplies of string and knot skills.”

Chris Boller – Finance

Bio: As a person who loves the outdoors, working in finance can sometimes be restricting, so to remedy this Chris has decided to bring her financial skills out here to Borneo on Expedition 11B!

Key Responsibilities: “Managing all the money, running the Raleigh shop and making sure people are being honest!”
Likes: Chocolate, adrenalin outdoor activities
Dislikes: Inconsiderate people on 13 hour plane journeys
Top Expedition Survival Tip: “Duck tape!”

Charlie Huins – Advance Medic
Bio: Charlie, our resident medic, has taken time out from his surgical training to treat infected bites in the Bornean jungle!
Key Responsibilities: “Keeping people alive!”
Likes: A challenge, mojitos, the jungle, time travel (ahh, that Doctor!)
Dislikes: Semolina, the mundane, shaving
Top Expedition Survival Tip: “Laughter is the best medicine. And an apple a day keeps me away!”

Bio: Loli is our happy, smiley Field Base cook; her food is absolutely out of this world!
Key Responsibilities: Cooking meals twice a day, six days a week, for the Field Base staff (also known as ‘fattening up’ the Field Base staff).
Likes: Everything, especially kitchen dancing!
Dislikes: Nothing!
Top Expedition Survival Tip: “Eat up!”

Bio: Pedro has been the resident Field Base cat for the past few expeditions.
Key Responsibilities: Keeping the rats and cockroaches at bay, looking cute.
Likes: Being stroked under his chin, catching birds, eating, lounging around, chasing things that aren’t there
Dislikes: Being moved off his favourite chair, being refused food, getting stuck in peoples’ laundry bags
Top Expedition Survival Tip: “Stroke me often.”

Don't forget to check back next week for pictures of the rest of the staff on Expedition 11B, not to mention news of the projects!

Monday, 10 January 2011

And So Expedition 11B Begins....

Greetings from sunny Borneo – and Happy New Year!
The team at Field Base have now welcomed the advance staff team of volunteers for expedition 11B, who (after an initial induction and several of Loli’s delicious meals!) are already getting down to the all-important business of preparing for the arrival of the rest of the staff and the venturers in the coming weeks.
This week is the calm before the storm, as everyone settles into their respective roles to ensure the smooth running of the expedition when it officially kicks off on 1st February. To get everyone in the Raleigh spirit, the new team was shown the slideshow of the previous expedition before being taken into nearby Lintas for a Malaysian roti dinner – already we’re learning to make the most of all the delicious Malaysian food on offer, as once the expedition starts it’ll be porridge and Raleigh rations all the way for those going out to the project sites! We’re also making the most of the space, as once the rest of the staff team arrives on Sunday there’ll be nearly forty people under one roof, and barely room to swing Pedro the Field Base cat!
The atmosphere here at Field Base is fantastic, and everyone is really excited about what the next few months will bring. One thing’s for sure – there won’t be a dull moment!

Pedro, making the most of the opportunity to relax before Field Base becomes a thriving hub of activity!