Does trekking through mud and rain, across mountain ranges up to 7000 feet above sea level with a 20-kilogram pack strapped to your back seem like the opportunity of a lifetime?
Castle Hill RSL Club is offering one person between the ages of 16 and 22 the chance to walk the Kokoda Track as part of the 2013 Kokoda Youth Leadership challenge.
“Castle Hill RSL is looking for someone who is up to the physical and mental challenges Kokoda is renowned for,’’ Castle Hill RSL group president Warren Glenny said.
Mitchell Hayes, the 2012 Castle Hill RSL Kokoda Trekker, said: “The Kokoda Youth Leadership challenge is one of the most difficult, yet rewarding, adventures I have ever undertaken.
‘‘I believe if I didn’t go on the Kokoda Youth Leadership Challenge I wouldn’t have got as much knowledge of the campaign and appreciation of what the diggers went through.
‘‘I would recommend this program to any young person who is looking for a challenge and wants to become a better person and be one that the diggers who sacrificed their life would be proud of.’’
Australians walk the Kokoda Track in memory of more than 2000 soldiers who died during World War II while defending Papua New Guinea from the invading Japanese army.
The Kokoda Youth Leadership Challenge (KYLC) is a peer group leadership program promoted by the RSL and Services Clubs Association and overseen by the KYLC Benevolent Fund.
The program was developed in consultation with NSW Upper House member and former army major Charlie Lynn, principal of the trekking company, Adventure Kokoda.
There are many benefits for those who take part in the Kokoda Youth Leadership Challenge. They will gain:
■Appreciation of our military history;
■Respect for the sacrifice made by young Australians of a previous generation;
■Appreciation of a culture whose values are not based on materialism;
■Sense of responsibility for the outcomes of the choices they make;
■Appreciation of the qualities necessary for effective teamwork such as loyalty, trust, honesty, courage, leadership, respect, discipline and sacrifice;
■Understanding of the characteristics of Australian leadership;
■Appreciation of the seven essentials of effective leadership (self, others, culture, environment, history, present and future); and
■Understanding of the purpose and value of community service.
Castle Hill RSL 2013 Kokoda Youth Leadership Challenge nomination criteria:
• Applicants must be 16 to 22 years as at September 29, 2013, and live in The Hills;
• Applicants must pass a medical examination to prove their fitness; and
• Applicants must be current active members of a Hills shire sporting club/team.
Nominations close on Friday, April 5, 2013.
Expenses including airfare (international) accommodation and food will be covered by Castle Hill RSL.