Relating to Hillary Outdoors Tongariro
For Parents & students
Hillary Outdoors’ gear is expensive and sometimes hard to replace. Most gear is identified by unique number and issued to individual students, some is issued to an activity group of 10 students. If a student or a group loses a piece of gear or breaks it through unreasonable carelessness then Hillary Outdoors will invoice the school or individual for the cost of replacement.
The value of the experience is closely linked to the independence that a student gains while away from home and parents. Schools sometimes use parents as accompanying adults, or a teacher may have their own child as a student at the school. In this case we usually recommend that a parent does not accompany their child during the day for outdoor activities.
In the case of severe allergies we are able to ensure that a client’s diet is free from, for example, nuts or dairy. However our kitchens are places where nut and dairy products are commonly used, and we are unable to guarantee there will not be traces of these products, or people in the same area eating these products. We have students come to both centres with severe allergies and are happy to work with these. In the case of severe allergies we are more than happy for you to contact the Centre directly prior to your child’s visit so that we can ensure we understand all their needs.
Some activities can be easily managed if an individual chooses not to participate, for example rock-climbing or abseiling. The individual can still be present and be part of the group dynamic. Some trips might require an abseil as part of the whole journey, in which case participation on that journey depends on completion of the abseil – it may be possible for this to be done with another person or the instructor.
Some people may have fears that relate to the very environment the activity occurs in – for example caving, or sea kayaking in deep water. In this case if a person chooses to opt out then they will not be with the group at all for that activity or journey – this may mean they are left back at the centre, under the supervision of a teacher or non-instructing staff.
In rare cases there may be a genuine requirement for a student to participate in something that they would rather choose to opt out of. For example if the weather, terrain or sea state changes during a journey and becomes more challenging, an individual may decide to opt out. The constraints of the situation may mean that the group and instructor will work with them to continue the journey until they are in a more comfortable psychological or physical place. Our instructors are skilled facilitators who know the area well and constantly monitor changing conditions, so this situation can normally be easily avoided.
Working with self-imposed limitations and the limitations of others brings situations that provide ample opportunities for learning and development. We aim to increase students’ resilience and skills, but do not seek risk for its own sake.
The OPC Biscuit Recipe
- 500gm Margarine
- 6 tablespoons Golden Syrup
- 1.5 cups Sugar
- 2.5 cups Plain Flour
- 2.5 cups Wholemeal Flour
- 2 cups Rolled Oats 1 cup Coconut
- 5 teaspoons Baking Powder
- 1 cup of either
- Chocolate Chips
- Or any other dried fruit or nuts
PRESS INTO GREASED BAKING DISH
BAKE @ 180 degrees Celsius for 15-20 minutes
CUT while warm, makes approximately 40 biscuits…….enjoy!!
Safety – General
- Aligning and streamlining all of our safety systems to make them more user friendly
- Clarifying and clearly communicating safety standards across all pursuits
- Highlighting those factors most likely to lead to serious harm
- Providing resources to allow instructors to carry simple hazard and crisis response information in the field
- Increasing the focus on crisis prevention and pre-planning for crisis management
- Enhancing instructor management and support systems
- Meeting current legislative requirements
- Developing a strong, conservative safety culture
Refer to our overview of the Safety Management System in the Safety section of our website, as well as other answers in these FAQs for further information about how important your safety is to us.
All Hillary Outdoors staff are trained and assessed in their ability to actively manage risk in a variety of situations and environments. Training occurs at induction and continues throughout their career with Hillary Outdoors. All our Instructors have relevant and current skills, first aid certificates and appropriate driving licences. Changing conditions during the day are monitored by our Duty Manager as well as by instructors in the field. Activities are cancelled, or adapted and contingency plans put into place if necessary.
We are proud of our standards of safety. If there is any aspect of the above information on which you require greater detail – please do ask us and we will be happy to provide it.
While Hillary Outdoors takes full responsibility for your students’ safety during activity times, we hope that teachers & supporting adults choose to participate in our activities, you do know your students best! Generally we will ask teachers to be ‘silent/cooperative supporters’ as it is important your students look to their Instructor for guidance during practical activities.
Between 5pm and 8.45am (with the exception of overnight expeditions away from the Centre), the school (Teacher i/c) is responsible for the care of the students – & the same ratio of 1:10 is a good guideline to work to. Our staff support this by running evening activities and additional back up is available in the form of a Duty Manager. Accompanying adults will be provided with a handbook which outlines their responsibilities including what to do in an emergency. We may also ask you or your other staff member(s) to take responsibility for any students who are unable to take part in the programme on a particular day, for example due to sickness.
We are proud to have been awarded OutdoorsMark status and as a part of this a safety audit is carried out every three years. We also have a rolling schedule of internal and external activity reviews.
All structures and critical equipment have scheduled inspections
All of our vehicles have current Warrants of Fitness (or Certificate of Fitness)
All of our buildings meet required standards and are checked regularly against our maintenance schedule
All gear and equipment used is logged and inspected regularly. We have a full time Resource Officer in charge of our outdoor equipment at OPC Tongariro.
Our kitchens are audited by the New Zealand Food Safety Authority
All safety equipment required for your programme is supplied by Hillary Outdoors unless otherwise discussed. Students are provided with a list of equipment and clothing they need to bring in their Student Information Booklet. In addition to this we have an extensive collection of personal clothing and equipment which we lend to students who do not have their own, or what they bring is inappropriate/inadequate.
At Hillary Outdoors Tongariro, our Youth Development Centre and two of our Chalets are wheelchair accessible. At GBI wheelchair disabilities are catered for in specifically converted, ground floor facilities. Hillary Outdoors has the capacity to provide a range of programmes for people with disabilities. Please discuss any students special needs with us when you make your booking. Frequently we encounter students whose parents have withheld information on the medical/consent form feeling their child will be discriminated against – in fact the opposite is more commonly the case! Please encourage parents to fully share information – together we can do a great job. We have excellent facilities and systems in place to work well with a wide range of students regardless of their issues – dietary, behavioural, self esteem related, etc.
It is the school’s responsibility to ensure the participant medical/consent forms have been fully completed and signed. These must be given to the instructor in charge on arrival. Any participant without a signed form will not be allowed to take part in activities. A large proportion of our incidents are the reoccurrence of pre existing injuries, often undeclared on the medical forms. Please encourage parents to share all pre existing conditions with us, however minor.
Please ensure your school has its own emergency procedures in place for your visit, including a 24 hour off site emergency contact number. This should be provided to Hillary Outdoors and the parents of attending students.
Audits by NZQA can be viewed online.
As a concession holder with DOC we are held accountable for our actions in the New Zealand wilderness.
If you would like to speak directly to an existing client for a reference, please contact our Schools Administrator who will arrange this for you
For School Teachers & Accompanying Adults
Everyone at Hillary Outdoors hopes that a student’s participation in one of our courses is not a ‘one off experience’ but rather the start of a lifelong appreciation and respect for the outdoors. For this reason it would be good to think that all students were prepared to invest some time in getting ready for a course at Hillary Outdoors. With this goal in mind we would encourage them to try and resource/borrow as much of their own gear for Hillary Outdoors as possible. While many students may not necessarily have access to good tramping boots or decent packs, most are usually able to borrow fleeces, or other warm clothing and sleeping bags from relatives and friends if they don’t have their own. This would reduce the wear and tear of our equipment, increase its replacement time and our costs would go down and in turn our prices would be kept as low as possible. This is a win win for everyone!
Further information about gear is mentioned on page 1 of the gear department booklet which can be downloaded from the Forms page (see “gear hire powerpoint”).
It is strongly recommended that everyone attending courses at Hillary Outdoors Tongariro have a read this booklet.
Of course if a student is unable to get certain items of gear then they can borrow it from our stores. Other than sleeping bags we do not need to know in advance what gear your students will need from us. On arrival night the Instructor in charge (IC) will issue gear department forms to the activity groups and the students tick what they need. They will collect their gear from the stores the following morning.
NB. Hillary Outdoors Tongariro does not supply or have socks or 1st layer thermal wear for hire.