This March saw us deliver our first intensive residential training retreat in Casuarina (Nth NSW) for 18 students who acted quickly to book their limited places. We went into it with some trepidation as this was a first for us and we had so much to teach in such a short time!
Participants had completed pre-retreat work and were familiar with the Foundations of Health and Wellness Coaching Level 1 and elements of Level 2, but otherwise were coming in fresh and open-minded.
And they were travelling from afar – Papua-New Guinea, Singapore, WA and Europe to name a few.
The group arrived on a Sunday afternoon in the midst of a very strong thunderstorm and so began the rapidly changing arrangements for transport and timetabling. With a late start, we set the introduction for the course and also heard the colourful and varied introductions from each student following our first delicious meal together. We knew then that the next few days would be fun.
A fairly intense timetable was followed with content from what would normally be 12 x 90 minute webinars delivered in two longer sessions each day and coaching circles interspersed in any break times. The venue meant we were very much in each others’ space (and face) with trainers staying as duty managers each night. Mel, Jenny and Fiona drew on their vast experience and answered the many questions posed from individuals who were keen to learn and also bring situation specific issues to the table.
Highpoints included a belly dancing session run by Guiness book record holder, Mel; walks on the beach (when the rain stopped); and a planned yoga session which unfortunately did not eventuate.
Coffees were found, Coles was located and a highlight was our last dinner out at Spice Den who catered for a variety of menu requirements and provided a wonderful atmosphere and location with delicious food.
Yes there were some minor hiccups – and we have learnt a lot from this inaugural event! But the real value in this event were the people who came together and shared their stories, backgrounds and hopes and intentions for the future.
Our team were so privileged to work with this group of students and we are all so excited about the possibilities that this delivery method will create. Each retreat will be different and we will be announcing dates for later in the year. So, for people who wish to fast-track their learning, aren’t afraid to travel and spend time in a close-knit group and are willing to be flexible, work hard but have fun, another opportunity will present itself soon!
Some comments from students who attended the March 2023 retreat:
“What a wonderful retreat and training, I couldn’t be happier to have done this, not only will I be an equipped and better coach, I am a better person for it. Thank you warmly to Fiona, Mel and Jenny, so pleased to have now connected with you all. Congratulations on putting this together, you should take time to acknowledge and celebrate.”
“The retreat was everything I hoped for, and so much more than a health and wellness coaching event. The retreat has fast tracked the development of my skills and given me a lifelong support network of health and wellness coaches. The retreat has provided me with the confidence to take the final step in launching my new allied health business venture that includes group coaching as a foundation for transformation in health and wellness goals. Thank you team WCA.”