National Volunteering Week in Sligo Blog 6: Order of Malta Cadets in Share Discovery Village

Share to Care OOMWe are Aisling, Maeve and Ashlee we are aged between 13 and 16. We are all Cadets in the Order of Malta (OMAC) Sligo unit and joined in September 2017. We volunteered at the Share Discovery Village in Lisnaskea Co. Fermanagh and did so because we wanted to help people with disabilities and their families. We are happy we joined the Order of Malta because we got this great opportunity and feel that the weekend in Share to Care built a community between us Cadets and our Leaders Claire, Sarah G. and Sarah K.

Share to Care is a respite holiday camp running since 2005 for people with disabilities and their families. We participated at the Share to Care Easter Camp 2018 and left Sligo on Friday the 23rd of March, arriving in Lisnaskea at 7 O’ Clock.

When we got there we got stuck in and joined in with fun and games with all the other guest families and helpers. We had a great time and it was a brilliant ice breaker for the weekend ahead. That night there was a movie night for some of the small kids and the teenage helpers took this time to get know each other.

We were up early the next morning and we helped the young guests get their breakfast so their parents could enjoy a nice quiet breakfast. After that we then went swimming with some guests in the large swimming pool they have on site followed by getting guests ready to go canoeing, it was so much fun. We got to bring the guests with us in canoes big enough for 8 people, along with going pier jumping while we were at the lake.

After lunch we did arts and crafts with the younger guests and other helpers and made Easter bonnets for our Easter parade that took place on Sunday. The young kids got on the bouncy castle while we supervised to make everyone had a fun time. We then helped out at an Easter egg hunt where the very excited guests found surprises from the Easter bunny! After all the excitement we all went for dinner again we prioritized the guests. After dinner we went to the disco in the hall where everyone had so much fun with the guests and our new friends we danced until very late.

On Sunday morning it was our turn to help out at the breakfast shift we helped set the tables and serve food for the respite families and the other helpers. We got to go swimming with other guests and then it was time to get packed before the Easter parade where we showed off the bonnets we made the day before. We then had our lunch and sadly had to go home.

We hoped that we did our best to give the families the break they deserved. We hoped we used our Community Care skills we learnt at our Cadet meetings while helping in Share to Care We have built a community with all the guests and helpers and we look forward to seeing them again soon. It was a fantastic weekend and we feel we learned so much and we are thankful for the wonderful experience.

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