Widening Horizons & Millfields Inspired: Spring Update

Millfields Trust and Millfields Inspired have required a permanent project co-ordinator for the Widening Horizons trips since December 2022. This individual would need to plan and oversee all of the upcoming day trips. However, until this position is filled, someone needs to ‘hold the fort’ by accompanying the year 5 students from various Plymouth primary schools for their respective day trips. That’s where Devon comes in.

Devon is no stranger to us here at Millfields trust. She has been a part of the team at Makers HQ for over 4 years. We were confident in entrusting her with this temporary position. Devon is already thriving in her new role and actively participating in the activities during the Widening Horizons trips. Devon has already accomplished a successful day out to the National Marine Aquarium, with trips to EE, Foot Anstey, and visits from medical students fast approaching. We sat down with Devon to learn about her experience and provide insight into what a typical Widening Horizons day trip looks like.

Widening Horizons & Millfields Inspired: Spring Update, Millfields Trust

What is a Widening Horizons day trip?

Widening Horizons day trips are for year 5 students at primary schools in the Stonehouse and Devonport area. We arrange for various companies, organisations etc. to host a trip for these students. The purpose of these trips is to introduce children to various jobs by giving them hands-on experience. This helps them see that a massive variety of different jobs can be enjoyable. Activities can range from designing a mobile phone to building a harness for a shark. We also arrange for medical students to visit children at their schools. These visits often include showing the children how to use some pieces of medical equipment as well as giving them crucial information that everybody should know. Regardless of what the plan is for a specific day, there is always a wide variety of activities available.

What does a typical day look like for you in this new role?

Usually with Widening Horizons I’m organising everything behind the scenes as there is a lot of work that goes into planning a day trip. I will plan which school will be going where and when. I will also ensure the schools have appropriate transport, go through risk assessments for every trip and check that the teachers are all happy with the schedule of each trip. Lots goes on behind the scenes to make each trip or session run smoothly.

What is the biggest highlight and surprise for the children?

The biggest highlight for the children is getting out of the classroom for the day to somewhere new and different. The biggest surprise to the children is the realisation that so many careers are actually fun and not what they imagined them to be before the trip.

What feedback have you had from teachers regrading the Widening Horizons?

Teachers seem to love that the children are able to have hands-on experience in so many different industries. They also love the fact that it is getting them out of the classroom as it allows the teachers to sit back a bit and take everything in.

How about the hosting businesses, any feedback from them?

Businesses always have a great day with the children. Almost all of them are asking for us to arrange more trips for them to host. It shakes up their average day at work and they always get asked some brilliant questions from the children.

What has been your personal highlight of the trips so far?

The biggest highlight is seeing the children being so engaged with the different work places they go to. That as well as seeing them get really excited about their own careers and future.

And what have you found to be the biggest challenge?

The biggest challenge has been working with a new class of 30 children on each trip. There are always so many different personalities and they’re all very excited about the trip and meeting new people, and they always have an abundance of questions to ask me and the hosting companies.

Do you have any more Widening Horizons day trips already planned?

We currently have more trips planned for visits to Cattewater Harbour Commissioners as well as EE and Foot Anstey. Days planned for medical students to visit children in the classroom are coming up soon as well.

Have your responsibilities at HQ changed at all?

I’m still running social media, working on production lines, and working with new customers. I am very busy! We are working with an amazing company called Furious Goose which is very exciting! Check out our Instagram to find out more!

If you would like to find out more about our Widen Horizon’s programme please visit the Millfields Inspired website.