Make Team Building Charitable and Fun
One thing you will most definitely need to get you across The Kokoda Challenge finish line is strong camaraderie between your team. Unlike other individual events, our rules greatly differ; firstly, you must have a team to register, you cannot register as an individual.
Secondly, you have a minimum fundraising that your team must reach before participating in the event. This will require you to put your heads together and get creative about how you can all collectively go above and beyond your fundraising requirement.
Thirdly, there are very strict rules that teams must adhere to during the event;
- You must stay within eye sight of your team throughout the whole event, you cannot separate from your team or you risk disqualification
- We encourage you to have your fastest team member at the back and your slowest at the front so they can control the pace and are not left behind
- The aim is to finish the event as a whole team with no drop outs. This stems from the Aussie colloquial term of mateship, meaning to leave no one behind
The Kokoda Challenge is not about beating your own personal best or powering ahead of your team. We are Australia’s toughest team endurance event, which is what makes us different from others! Having to check in with those around you and not just focus on yourself is exactly what our Diggers did on the Kokoda Track in 1942 and these are the very values we would like to instil in future generations; looking out for one another.
It’s also what makes the event a unique experience! You will spend time laughing, chatting and making memories, when other times you will see real, raw emotion come out as you’re all pushed far beyond your limits.
It is an experience that builds an unbreakable bond, because through enduring hardship together, we grow closer. We prove to each other that we have one another’s back when the going gets tough and it certainly will get tough at times!
It is the ultimate team building experience, which is why we have such a large number of school and corporate teams plus friends and families participating together. Through this experience, you learn so much about team dynamics; having empathy when emotions are running high, lending a hand when someone is physically struggling or offering some words of encouragement when mentally your teammate is ready to quit.
As Kokoda Veteran George Palmer said; “The friendships that you made in the army were wonderful,” he said. “They were different to ordinary friendships because you relied on each other for everything. They were wonderful mates, really, really good.”
I'm truly grateful for my team! To me, we are just a one-time-team-goodbye-never-see-each but we are family. We are friends for life now, forged with that magical force that Kokoda brings to every team who competed. I might have slowed us down but there was never a time that I felt I was blamed for not meeting our time goal. Instead, I felt loved, cared for and looked after. That gave me the boost I needed to push harder
The event was really tough and I could not have done it on my own. Many thanks and gratitude to my team mate for sticking by me even though they could easily run the track. They gave me tips, encouragement and believed in me even when I didn't believe in myself.
What a tough event! I've completed the 96km 5 times now and I still rely on my team to help get me to the finish line. They embody the true spirit of Kokoda and I'm in awe of their mental and physical strength to forfeit their own abilities to accommodate mine.