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Queen Elizabeth's Grammar School Horncastle


World Challenge pupils visit a school in a village called Man Ban, China

On 13th July, 18 students, two teachers and one world challenge leader flew to Thailand to start a one month expedition in south-east Asia. Beginning our journey in Chiang Mai, we did many R and R activities, including white water rafting in a jungle area and visiting an elephant sanctuary where we learned about the devastating effects of using elephants for entertainment. Next we travelled across the border (consisting of the Mekong River) to Laos to embark on our first trek through a jungle. The conditions were rather wet but after a diet consisting of only sticky rice and falling over many times, the team made it back to the hotel in Luang Nam Tha in relatively high spirits. After spending the night to recover, we crossed the border to China, where we undertook a project in a village called Man Ban, near Jinghong in the Yunnan provenance. Here we taught the Chinese children English, aided by our two wonderful translators, Piggy and Chitty; painted a mural in their playground and built goal posts. After spending two days in Jinghong and five days in the village, we had one final border crossing into Lao Cai, Vietnam. The destination of our second and final trek was Sapa, the home to many ethnic minorities. Our guide, from the Hmong ethnic group, kept our morale high with her slightly insane sense of humour as we trekked for five days through the blazing heat and also torrential rain. We then travelled to Hanoi on an overnight train for the final stage of our expedition- some more R and R. We had been saving throughout the trip for a boat tour around Halong Bay and it was definitely worth it because the view was stunning. On our last day we managed to see Ho Chi Minh’s body, which was a great experience for those who took GCSE History. We returned on the 11th August, slightly more tired and thinner than how we started but left with memories that we will never forget.

World Challenge pupils enjoying a trek World Challenge pupils enjoying Halong Bay