So my placement is over, and I am more than a little bit sad! My last couple of weeks have been busy with a record month of bookings, and tying up projects in the office with Chris.
Something I have just completed, as a lovely way to finish off my work experience year is designing and writing a book which reflects on the Connection to Nature day we put on at Crystal Creek Meadows last November for World Responsible Tourism Day (link below).
The book highlights the findings of the research we carried out to see how the children’s exposure to nature influenced their connections, leading to more pro-environmental behaviour in the future. The book displays the children’s Eco-Art work and then suggests ways in which guests can find similar fun things to do on the property.
Doing the research back in November with Chris was a real privilege and I was so enthusiastic to be involved in the study, but creating a book to share with likeminded guests has been the cherry on the cake! It is my chance to share with guests a passion I share with Crystal Creek Meadows, and remind myself of the wonderful things nature has to offer.
This is a picture of Christopher and myself with a copy of the book which I shall forever treasure!
I can say with confidence that taking up the opportunity to work for Crystal Creek Meadows was something I will never forget. I have learned so much from Chris, having studied a masters in Responsible Tourism, as well as doing lots of other consultancy work which he is kind enough to share with me, and provide case studies which I will be able to utilize to finish my studies next year.
Working with Sophie in the dynamic, fast-paced accommodation reception has also been a challenge and something I have really enjoyed doing and learning from. Being just the two of us there, it has been important that I do my job effectively and I have learned a lot about how small tourism businesses operate and become successful in today’s competitive market.
One other thing I would like to say is that this year has helped me shape my dreams for the future, and I am leaving with a clearer idea of where I want to be and how I can get there. I have been inspired by the community togetherness of Kangaroo Valley, and I hope to take back what I have learned and make some changes to other communities based on this great example.
Working at Crystal Creek Meadows was not just a job for me. It was a way of life. I enjoyed the family atmosphere of ‘everybody mucking in’, and never once looked at the clock to see how many hours I had left at work. The work was diverse and interesting and the variety of physical, routine and mentally challenging work really suited me.
Finally, I should say thank you Crystal Creek Meadows for such an amazing year. I would recommend anyone with a strong passion in responsible tourism and an appreciation for the natural beauty of Kangaroo Valley should not hesitate to get involved. You won’t regret it.