14- 16th September, 2018


After being enamoured by the generosity, hospitality and love from the townspeople of Woodstock back in 2016, The Big Lift just had to return! Last weekend, 20 UTS students participated in our Little Lifts Trip to the wondrous Woodstock. With a combination of alumnis and new participating members, we already knew it would be an exciting, and memorable trip!

Many of our Lifters would agree that our journey to Woodstock was definitely unforgettable in the most traumatising way. How so? Let’s say we took a little detour to a haunted pitch black cul-de-sac surrounded by multiple rabbits and kangaroos. In light of bad navigation, we eventually managed to reach the warm community hall at Woodstock where we were later greeted by the lovely Sue, Ann and sassy Kit. Soon after munching on endless snacks, tea and hot chocolate, it was *lights out* as our service projects awaited us the next day.

On Saturday, Lifters were given various service projects that ranged from heavy lifting, painting to bulldozing (not literally) a shed. Firstly, Lifters were divided into two groups of 10 to work as efficiently as possible. One group was designated the special role in painting the Country Women’s Association (CWA) nursing room. Simultaneously, the other group refurbished the community hall by removing old carpets, nails and wooden plaques from the old floor boards. Lifters also disposed old furnishings, dusted the community hall, removed dirty cobwebs and discovered treasures from under the stage. We were super blessed to have amazing weather which motivated us to work hard throughout the day! In celebration of the Lifters efforts, Sue and the towns people took us the the Woodstock Lawn Bowls Club and taught us how to be professional lawn bowlers!!! This part of the trip was definitely a highlight as seeing the townspeople and students bond and learn about each others lifestyles and life experiences was heartwarming.

On our final day at Woodstock, Lifters mulched the memorial garden beds around the community nature reserve. There was a total of three massive piles of mulch, and with the determination of our incredible lifters, we managed to clear almost everything!! It was an amazing weekend, filled with enthusiasm, and joy helping the community of Woodstock once again. To newly formed friendships, lessons, and to the time given to these communities, many of the lifters gained an incredible experience, with much to look back on and apply #payingitforward in the future!

- Justine Da Jose