Jayden’s Story

The most important thing to me in my life would have to be the great outdoors. Nature plays a big part in my life from when I was growing up to now and probably my future
When I was a little kid you’d always find me outside climbing some tree or building a hut imaging I was building my own kingdom.

My dad is a true loving of animals and plants so we have always been around animals and outside in nature going on bush walks and stuff of that nature. We were quite lucky, we had a massive New Zealand native bush right on our doorstep over in governors bay. I remember walking with dad through the bush and I’m positive he could name every plant and animal there was.

We ended up moving to Rangiora for a few years. Yet again we had a massive forest but this time it was a massive pine forest. I’d been in that forest literally every day after soon and every time I had spare. I built my own little world there.

We moved back to governors when I was 12 and I remember we were doing a unit at school about New Zealand forest and all that jazz. Department of Conservation D.O.C. came into our school and gave us the opportunity to help out at the local reserve down by the waterfront.

I remember setting up traps for possums and planting heaps of native plants. I knew that this was something I really wanted to get into when I grow up.
At end of year 13, my Grandma bought me a ticket to go on this trip of a lifetime lets say. It was a 12-day tramp down in Mt Aspiring National Park. Let’s just say after that I knew what I wanted to do.


2017 I started my course, Sustainability, Outdoor Education at Ara Institute of Canterbury. It’s been an amazing experience and well I have another two years of this totally sick course. Like we go water kayaking, rock climbing, avalanche trips and all this crazy outdoor stuff. Anyway, the cool thing is this course will set me up for working in the outdoors. One path I’m wanting to head into is adventure therapy, working with at risk kids in the outdoors. Why this? Because I’m a youth leader and I’ve worked with plenty at risk kids in my life and knowing what I learned from the trip I went on at Mt Aspiring with about 12 teens from around the country and 3 amazing mentors that changed my life forever. I know I wanna change young New Zealanders lives before they hit the real work and at the same time do something I love.