Our goal at BCITO is to help and support each of our apprentices to be as successful as possible in their development. To help achieve this goal, we formed a group of 15 apprentices to work with us and all of our apprentices across all of our industry sectors. These apprentices are called Apprentice Leaders, and together they form the Apprentice Leadership Group.

Our apprentice leaders were recently invited to participate in an Outward Bound Course that focused on team building and personal development, and we caught up with them all to learn more about their experience and what they learned.

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Finn Gallagher-Forbes, one of our Stone and Masonry Apprentices, embarked on a "profoundly transformational" journey during the Outward Bound Course. The course offered a powerful perspective on what truly matters and challenged both his and his peers’ expectations through physical and mental challenges.

Among the many memorable moments, one that left a significant impression on Finn was sailing into Anakiwa. The timing was significant as it coincided with the Hawke's Bay flooding, preventing some participants from joining. This experience deeply resonated with Finn, underlining the stark contrast between their beautiful surroundings and the hardships faced by others throughout New Zealand due to the floods.

Furthermore, Finn shared that the Outward Bound experience yielded numerous takeaways. "There's been a lot that I've taken from it, and I believe the same goes for the others," he explained. "Before attending Outward Bound, I already valued and took pride in having principles such as empathy, honesty, and transparency. But being in the Outward Bound environment reaffirmed the importance of these qualities and highlighted the value of the journey when shared with those around you."

When asked if he would recommend the Outward Bound experience to others, Finn didn't hesitate to reply, "I'd recommend it to everyone, from every walk of life". "In a unanimous agreement among our team, we concluded that if everyone could experience what we did during those few days, the world would be a better place”.

"If I had one piece of advice for anyone doing Outward Bound, it would be to try, even though it might be challenging for some, to approach it with the most open mind possible. Avoid preconceived opinions or limiting mindsets that could hinder you from fully experiencing the programme. The people leading this programme do what they do for a reason. Trust them and allow them to guide you through it, and you'll get 110% out of it."

Finn’s journey at Outward Bound reflects the essence of the programme where personal and professional growth, facing challenges, and building a sense of unity within a team are celebrated. We are proud to have Apprentice Leaders like Finn, who seize the opportunity for personal development and are keen to share their positive experiences with others.