Ollie Fergusson at SPY
This being my first CAP meant I was filled with apprehension as my train rolled into Manchester Piccadilly. As I walked the long walk from the platform to where I was going to meet Pete Agnew I became even more nervous but when I saw the friendly faces of Ozzy and Pete I began to relax a little. They were very welcoming and I could tell by their light-hearted attempts to scare me this was going to be an amusing fortnight.
I was shortly introduced to everyone at the office and straight away I could tell there was a relaxed atmosphere about the office. This made it and everyone seem very welcoming and I felt at ease immediately. This feeling lasted for the whole two weeks and I enjoyed being included in after hours activities.
Over the two weeks I helped with a wide range of activities and observed many different types of leadership. The leadership I saw the most of wasnÃ¢€â„¢t as conventional as what you might imagine. The obvious feature was the great amount of respect the young people have for the workers of SPY who they look up to them for an example. The leadership works because they donÃ¢€â„¢t have to order people around and be the Ã¢€Ëœbad guysÃ¢€â„¢ stopping everyone having fun; they simply have to set the right example which is then followed. It is down to the great respect the SPY workers have earned that they can be good leaders and role models at the same time.
As well as experiencing a different form of leadership I enjoyed learning a great deal about Islam and the Muslim way of life as I have had virtually no contact with Muslims before. The many other memorable new experiences from my time at SPY include living in a city for two weeks, having lived all my life in the Ayrshire countryside.
I would like to say thank you to all the staff at SPY for welcoming me so warmly and always making me smile when they were around. Special thanks need to go to Ozzy for looking out for me during the first week and to Omar for having me to stay both weeks and keeping me amused in the evenings. Finally many thanks to Pete and Hayley for their time, hospitality and kindness. It was a great pleasure getting to know you all.