For her Personal Skill, Mary Angela took up flying. Her aim was to get her private pilot’s licence or a PPL. Having always had an interest in flying, she saw the Gold Gaisce Award as the ideal opportunity to learn. She received her PPL from the Atlantic Flight Training Academy in Cork. For the first 20 hours of her training, she and her instructor worked on turning, climbing, ascending, descending, flying in IFR conditions and learning how to react if the engine failed. The first time Mary Angela flew solo was nerve-wracking, but extremely exciting.
As part of her Community Involvement, Mary Angela decided to become a Beaver Leader for children between the ages of six and eight. During the year, Mary Angela played games, held parties and taught the children geography and history. They were also taught how to build shelters and make a campfire. Mary Angela accompanied the children on outings to Cobh, the observatory and the woods for walks. During her time as a Beaver Leader, she learned much about looking after younger children, including the art of patience!
Mary Angela decided to improve on her horse riding skills in Hop-Island, Rochestown for her Physical Recreation. While she had a lot of knowledge of horse-riding, she felt there were many areas she could improve on. To start, Mary Angela had to demonstrate a walk, trot and perfect her canter. She also learned some theory, including learning the mechanics of a horse. After she perfected her skills, she was finally allowed to start jumping.
For her Adventure Journey, Mary Angela, along with two others, organised a walk from Clonmel to Kilkenny and then onto Athy, the aim being to walk three counties in four days.
To complete her Gaisce journey, Mary Angela went on a trip to Swansea, Wales with the Scouts as part of her Residential Project. Over the course of the week, she organised a number of activities including climbing, abseiling, archery, air rifles and an assault course.