IHAD’s Dream School Holiday programme

Every January  I Have a Dream (IHAD) provides a free school holiday programme for tamariki and rangitahi from their partner schools

Under the guidance of IHAD’s passionate and dedicated Navigators, Year 7 and 8 Dreamers get together for a week of whanaungatanga, ako and rangitira – and they love it!

This year, three of the five days was spent on the Mountains to Sea programme where they got a hands-on environmental education delivered by facilitator, Oliver Bone. The programme is designed to empower tamariki to explore and strengthen their connection through experiences in forests, rivers and the ocean.

Two days were spent at the IHAD house in the grounds of Tikipunga High School. This was especially valuable for the Year 7’s as they were able to get used to their new learning environment before the start of the school year. They also met other IHAD High School Navigators who made them feel extremely welcome through various shared experiences, helping develop really valuable connections before school started for the year.

Year 7 Navigator Rose Welsh says it was a really special time.

“We have children from Tikipunga Primary, Totara Grove, Otangarei Primary and Tikipunga High come together and they really make a connection which helps make the transition into high school easier for them.

“It was great to have the other high school Navigators meet with the Year 7’s and make connections before the start of the school year. The high school is much more collaborative and it was important to create space for this to happen” says Rose.

High school Navigator Daisy Rogers believes having a mixed holiday programme with Years 9 to 13 is a really good formula.

“What is special is that we offer a safe space and place in the school holidays for around 40 Dreamers and expose them to activities and new people. The holiday programme is an amazing opportunity to develop relationships with other students, volunteers and external people in the community.

“The activities can really flick the switch on their light bulbs. For example, students completing a four hour hike they didn’t believe they could do and having a go at surfing. It is about building resilience and determination through teamwork and communication – making the Dreamers realise they can achieve anything. It’s an awesome opportunity to practice leadership skills,” adds Daisy.


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