Actividades Liderazgos para Mujeres Adolescentes. (Leadership Activities for Adolescent Women).
Thanks to many of you who read this, and some who don’t, the Volunteers in my region were able to put on a super successful leadership camp for girls about a month ago. And when I say super successful, I mean SUUUUPER successful. How do I gauge the successfulness? By what the girls learned; by how much fun they had; by what they took away from the camp; by what they learned about themselves; by how they acted throughout the weekend; by the number of new friends they made; by the level of excitement they showed; by their eagerness to take what they learned and share it with peers; and by their reluctance to leave come Monday morning. My girls had a blast. I kept checking in with them throughout the weekend and their response was always the same: “This is so fun! We’re making so many friends! I can’t wait for the next session! THIS IS SO COOL!”
I was able to take 2 girls from my Secundaria school with me to the camp: Vianca, who I’ve been close with since the beginning; and Linda, who I didn’t know very well before the camp. Let me tell you a little about the girls. Vianca is 16 and is in her last year of high school. She’s vibrant, loud, outgoing, social, and a born leader. I chose to take Vianca for obvious reasons. During the first session at camp the girls were asked to volunteer to stand up in front of the group and say what their expectations were for the camp. Vianca was the first one with her hand up. I knew from the very beginning that Vianca was going to thrive at this camp. Linda, on the other hand, is a different story. She’s quiet and reserved, she doesn’t talk a lot, and she’s more comfortable one-on-one than in front of a crowd. Linda has all the capabilities to be a leader, but she is often over-shadowed by her more boisterous peers. At the beginning of the camp I noticed that she followed Vianca wherever she went. Vianca had already made new friends, but Linda would just tag along. I chose to bring Linda to encourage, or even force her, to break out of her shell, but my idea wasn’t working. I didn’t know what to do. I hoped that after she built some trust with her team and got to know the other girls a little better that she’d be a little more outgoing. My hopes came true. By the end of the camp, Linda was surrounded by new friends. In their free time Linda and Vianca didn’t flock to each other but rather spent their free time with their teammates or roommates. Linda did exactly what I hoped she’d do- she broke out of her shell and established her independence. If she learned nothing else from the camp, at least she realized that she is her own person and doesn’t need to follow along in the shadows.
The girls may not remember every single thing they learned, but they will never forget the friends they made and the fun they had. Those four days will be something they will talk about for years to come and reminisce about forever.
I am grateful to every one of you that donated for providing those girls with an unforgettable experience. Mil gracias!
“Before you are a leader, success is all about growing yourself. When you become a leader, success is all about growing others.”