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Stephen Longfellow Raleigh Venturer in Borneo

Stephen Longfellow, Raleigh Venturer, Borneo Before I joined Raleigh I was working for a construction recruitment company while I was doing a Masters degree in Victorian Studies at night school. I wanted to take some time out to create a few memories and work on things that I could be proud of. I only really considered Raleigh as it was recommended by my older brother. He had nothing but good things to say about the charity and I could see the way it benefited him.

To raise the funds to join my expedition I did a sponsored walk for 27 miles in the Yorkshire Three Peaks which was a fantastic day out with my friends and family. I also did a gig with my band at a local club where to raise money; we also put on a raffle where local shops and organisations donated prizes.

During the environmental expedition phase, I was in a group working at Sepilok's Sun Bear Sanctuary. It was amazing! It was a fantastic team to be part of as the group became more and more like a family. Doing work on the boardwalk to help the keepers was very satisfying and being able to come back to jungle camp each evening was such a boost because you could be certain of good noodle based food and some of the daftest (in a good way) evening entertainment. Fantastic memories!

Children are never far away from volunteers that visit BorneoOne of my best moments on expedition was during the trek in the pouring rain singing 'If You're Happy And You Know It'! It was great to see how everyone could still see the lighter side of life even when we found ourselves in the most challenging of circumstances. It was such a positive group, with everyone motivating each other that the trek seemed to fly by.

I've learnt trekking skills, diving skills, survival skills and tonnes more from this experience, it's fantastic! I've also discovered that I'm quite a positive person and that that can be very beneficial in a lot of situations.

Following on from Raleigh I will be travelling on to see friends and family in Australia and New Zealand. I'm also considering applying to return as a Project Manager on a future Raleigh expedition.

To sum up Raleigh for me: It's been a completely positive experience. After years in education and office work, it's been fantastic to finally get out there and make some memories.

Stephen Longfellowjoined Raleigh's ten week expedition in Borneo and worked on community, environmental and adventure projects