Hello! Welcome to the adventures of the 2017 Sir Peter Blake Antarctic Youth Ambassador! My name is Chris Ansin and I am absolutely ecstatic about joining the team going to Antarctica this year, something which I have been dreaming of since I was a kid.
Antarctica? How does one even get to go to Antarctica? Thankfully for me, through The Sir Peter Blake Trust, an incredible youth Blake Ambassador programme to encourage young people to explore and bring awareness of the world that we live in. The Trust partners with organisations such as Antarctic Heritage Trust, Antarctica New Zealand, Department of Conservation, and NIWA, to give once in a lifetime opportunities to young people wanting to learn more and experience our environment. I cannot thank The Sir Peter Blake Trust, Antarctic Heritage Trust and Antarctica New Zealand enough for this amazing experience and the generosity and support they have all shown me.
Here is a short and sweet background to who I am and how I came to be here. I am a 25 year old process engineer who grew up in the deep south of Dunedin, a city based off Edinburgh with a personality to match. I studied in Christchurch and have spent the last two years in New Plymouth before moving to Auckland to explore the winterless north.
I have spent the past few days being inducted into Antarctic life- learning about the immense history of the historic huts and meeting the great team that I will be working with. This includes Diana (pictured above) as the conservation ambassador, and Antarctic Heritage Trust staff Lizzie Meek (Programme Manager – Artefacts), and Al Fastier (Programme Manager). We spent two hours fitting out our clothes! If puffer jackets got their name from being puffy, then these things should be called mellow puffs, they are seriously warm!
I am several nights away from flying and already I cannot sleep thinking about this trip! If my job description is anything to go by then I will have my work cut out for me. I can’t wait to share my journey, and I hope you enjoy coming with me on this life-changing experience.
Written by Chris Ansin, Antarctic Heritage Trust and Sir Peter Blake Trust Antarctic Youth Ambassador