Emma joined Rock UK in 2011 on our Instructor Training Programme (ITP) She has since held a number of roles throughout the organisation from Instructor to Head Office support and administration. Emma is now our Chief Instructor at Carroty Wood in Kent.
“I’ve always wanted to work with kids, but I was never really sure how I could find a role that would fit. I came across Rock UK at a Soul Survivor event and eventually joined the ITP.
I was a fairly new Christian at the time, so to become part of an organisation where there were people of a similar age to me, who were freely talking about God without judgement was amazing. Combined with my love of the outdoors and a passion for working with children, I did feel that it was part of God’s plan for me to find my way to Rock UK.
When I joined the ITP, mine was one of the first groups to attend the initial three month training session before we all went to our own Centres. It was an intense three months of getting to know people, getting over your fears and stretching muscles that I didn’t know I had, but the bond it created between our group was really special.
There was a lot to learn across all of the different specialisms which can be quite daunting but it really set us up for getting back to our Centre’s and being able to start delivering the different activity sessions.
It’s really amazing when you can see the impact that you’ve had on a group or an individual. I remember the first time I looked after a group when I was fresh out of training. Rather than just running one or two sessions with them, I was able to spend the full week with the group and really build up a rapport with the teachers and the students. We got to know their names, faces and personalities. We knew where we could push and challenge them and when they had reached their limits. It was really incredible to see their progression over the course of the week. As the school is one of our regular users, we were able to talk to their teachers and catch up with how they were all doing, years after they had completed their residential week with us. It was such a joy to get updates on the kids progress and to share in life events.
As the Chief Instructor, I don’t spend quite as much time running activities anymore, but I do like to go and help the team from time to time or when I’m needed. My role now is really varied and focusses on making sure that the team have everything they need to run the sessions from equipment to qualifications and training to moral support. I also teach swimming at the swim school that we have at Carroty Wood, so no two days are ever the same!
For anyone looking to join the ITP, I would say, just go for it. This is such a special company to work for, where you can freely let God shine and there is real care from the team. If you have passion for the outdoors and to work with children and want excitement and adventure then this is for you.”