Youth Program Georgia
'Walking a Heroic Track'
Written by Georgia Hansson, age 17
I have been one of the most privileged people in the world. To be a part of something like the Kokoda Challenge Youth Program has brought the best out of me - and the best out of everyone in the group.
This program has changed my life. I have met some of the most wonderful people who I now call my friends and love very dearly.
My mentors were our youth leaders Sam, David and Shane Stedwell and Shane Klintworth.
Before my time in the youth program, I was a very shy, very quiet girl. Anyone who knows me now can see a changed Georgia. I have developed into a confident person who is capable of anything.
To be a part of this program has also shown me the true aspects of the Kokoda Spirit – Endurance Sacrifice, Courage and Mateship.
The training sessions tested our Endurance. Our Courage shone through when everyone was willing to step outside of their usual comforts. Sacrifice was shown by the many who got us through the Challenge and the Kokoda Track – for this I must thank my mum and all the parents involved.
And finally, the Mateship that so many of us developed during the 14 months of being together.
Through our training and our trip to Papua New Guinea, we took on the spirit of Kokoda and learnt what our heroes, the Diggers, went through to protect and serve our country.
I am proud to have had this life changing experience with the Gold Coast Kokoda Kids. They have filled my life with new meaning and have given me many memories that I will treasure forever.
I know my time in the youth program has ended but there is one thing I will never forget Sam saying to me: “I will never stop being a Kokoda Kid!”