As we have now completed our final full day in South Africa we thought this would be a good opportunity to reflect on our experiences.  We would also like to take this opportunity to thank all those of you at home who have supported us through our fundraising, through times of uncertainty – when we were unsure of whether the trip would actually be able to go ahead, and especially through the visit itself! Your messages of love and support have kept us going throughout the trip despite illness, injury and fatigue.  Although we are sad to be leaving, we certainly look forward to seeing you all soon and sharing our stories and memories with you.

Please enjoy our final blog entry…

Alex- I have had one of the best two weeks of my life and changed my thoughts and views to a lot of things. It’s been amazing working with all the kids and has made me realised how lucky I am. I have loved the experience and will be a great time to look back on.

Adam-I have taken a lot from this experience over the last 2 weeks , about what I take for granted in every day life . It has been amazing working at the school with all the kids and realising  how lucky we all are to have such a good education . I have loved every second of this experience.

Sophie – The Johannesburg 2014 experience has drastically changed my outlook on daily life and the things each of us take for granted. It has been a humbling experience but an enlightening one as everyone we’ve met has welcomed us with open arms and smiling faces. The goodbyes have been hard but the mere thought of returning is enough to make any of us smile. An experience to remember and friends to cherish.

Edan- The experience has been amazing and extremely changed me as a person. I’m so glad I have been able to come to Johannesburg because it has made me realise I take a lot of things for granted that some people in the world don’t have. I will able to look back on the experience and know I’ve changed people’s lives, I’m so grateful.

Frazer – I have learnt a lot from this trip. It has been a life changing experience which I shall look back on for my whole life. I`m happy that I managed to get chosen for such an amazing trip in such an amazing country. It has been so good working at the school and with the children also visiting the squatter camp.

Brad – From this trip I have learnt so many life changing things and have made some amazing friends and grown stronger bonds with teachers and recent friends! Thanks to all of you for your encouragement with your blog comments, thanks to all that have helped make this trip happen and thanks to all the people that have participated in this trip which will not be forgotten. I would just like to say a huge thank you to all the teachers that have come with us on this trip as well.

Charlie-So much has happened on this trip, its impossible to write it in such a short space. All I can say is how much it has, and will continue to effect me. I have loved every second of my 2 weeks here.

Josh- Wow! What an amazing 2 weeks I’ve had on this trip. I have met the most caring, kind and affectionate people out here and I wouldn’t of changed any moment of it (even the broken finger). I would like to say a massive thank you to the wonderful teachers that have made this trip what it is and a special thanks to Miss Heggs for all she has done to make this trip! It has changed my perspective on people and general everyday life so thank you for giving me this opportunity, it means the world.

Steph- These 2 weeks have flown by! It has been truly brilliant from start to finish, from meeting all the amazing people to sight seeing! A big thank you is due to teachers who have made this possible and to everyone who has helped me fund raise. This trip has made me realize how lucky we are and has really opened my eyes. My favorite part was visiting the Squatter Camp! I am grateful for everything I have and being able to come on such a amazing experience!

Molly-it still doesn’t feel real being here, its been an amazing experience, that I will never forget. I’m so glad I’ve taken this opportunity, this trip has made me realize how lucky we are back in England, I’ve also got to know more about south Africa, and what an amazing country it is, and the people in it…. thank you to all the teachers, (especially Heggs) for organizing, and making the trip fabulous!! I’ve had the best time , and although i do want to see my family, i will miss being here!

Ollie – All i known is I’m gonna take a lot away from this trip and its been a huge eye opening experience. this trip has enabled me to develop friendships with the teachers as well as make new, close friendships with other members on the trip. I’ve also met such innocent people who definitely do not deserve to live their lives the way they do. thank you to everyone who helped organised the trip and was able to make it happen. thank you.

Erin- I don’t think just from reading the blog any of you will have a sense of how extraordinary this trip has been. There has been countless moments that can’t be put into words (might we try) and that we’ll treasure forever. We have met so many people that have already impacted our lives, and especially going to the squatter camp has made me realise how lucky I am.  It’s been very emotional but what an amazing experience!

Ellie Creed – This trip is probably going to be my best and favorite memory for a long time! These 2 weeks have gone so fast and i wish that I could spend more time here to help those people in need. The memories made on this trip will stay with me and the rest of the team for the rest of their lives! Here it has made me realize that we are so fortunate in England and some people should not take what the have for granted and make the most of it. I’ve had the time of my life here and I am very grateful and happy that the teachers decided to pick me for this trip, it was an amazing experience xx  Thank you <3

Nicole – This trip has been such an amazing experience for me and something I would never have imagined would be offered to me! These 2 weeks have gone farrrr to fast for my liking, i wish I could go back and do it all over again. I grabbed every opportunity I was given with both hands like I promised I would. I’m so glad I did all my family proud and family friends! Being at the school and the squatter camps made me realise how much I take for granted at home and how much I don’t thank my parents enough for what they do for me! Thank you for all the support from everyone that helped me, 2 sleeps Mummy;) Can’t wait for hugs off you mum&dad Love you lotties<3

Jasmine-I cant believe how lucky I am to say I have been south Africa, and done all this for so many people who need it. I’ve learnt so much from this once in a lifetime chance. This trip has been such an eye opener, and has definitely hit home of how lucky we are. This trip has been amazing, but I can’t wait until I see my Mum, Dad, Robyn, Jodie-Ann and the rest of the family, Love you all so much!

Ellie Cowe- Cant believe the trip is nearly over it has been such an amazing experience. I feel so lucky that i got the chance to go on this trip and meet all the people I have. It has made me realise  how lucky we are and not to take things for granted. Even though I have had such a good time cant wait to be home and see my family love you xx

Karina – Thank you very much for all your love and support throughout this journey, I couldn’t have done it without you. I will never forget this trip as it has taught me many life long lessons. I truly appreciate everything I Have and all that you provide for me :) again thank you very much!

Georgia Dobson- Firstly I want to thank my friends and family for the help and support with fund raising for this amazing opportunity. These 2 weeks have flow by but i have loved every second of it. There has been so many eye openers and it really has made me appreciate what I have back home. I will treasure the memories and new friends I have made for a life time. Thank you so much everyone as well for making it a very successful trip.

Lucy Griffith- Hi, I can’t wait to see you all soon but don’t want this trip to be over. Thank you so much to everyone who helped me fund raise throughout the past 18 months as it funded this life changing experience. We are coming back not as a group but a family and have gained many lifelong memories and friends from this trip. It has helped me appreciate the simple things in life which the people here can only pray for such as: health, loving family, good education and so much more. Thank you everyone who helped orgainse this trip as it will never be forgotten by a lot of people.

Lucy Snow-  Hi all, thank you everyone so much for helping and supporting me with the fundraising to enable me to take part in this amazing experience. It has been life changing and I have made so many new friends. This trip has made me not take so many things for granted since seeing the poor living conditions some people over here live in, I definitely appreciate so much more now. Thank you all again!