David’s RYLA Experience

By Dubzz | Monday, May 9, 2016

David from the Dubzz team attended RYLA 2016 by Rotary Rotorua West, which is a weeklong live-in seminar developed and funded by Rotary for youth aged between 18 and 26 who demonstrate strong community and leadership qualities.

For those that don’t know, RYLA is a weeklong live-in seminar developed and funded by Rotary for youth aged between 18 and 26 who demonstrate strong community and leadership qualities. The course is designed to provide young people with an educational experience with emphasis on leadership development.

RYLA was a full on week jam packed with lessons, learnings and challenges. It started on a SUNDAY morning! Which meant an early start and a scenic drive to Epworth camp on Lake Karapiro where I met 41 other fresh faces that were just as excited (and slightly apprehensive) for the week that would be.

The experience provided a unique opportunity to spend an entire week away from my normal day to day, meet a bunch of interesting likeminded people, learn new ideas and focus on personal development.

The days were long and full of activities with little down time.  The team building activities included Raft building, caving, climbing, cooking, dancing and tower building to name only a few. These were spaced out throughout the week, all with their own challenges and take home learnings.

As well as team building, a major part of the week was spent in a classroom setting where we had the opportunity to listen and learn from notable guest speakers on a range of topics. One of which was Libby Gairdner a Hamilton based Rotarian who also happens to be a professional transformation coach. She has had a major influence on Rotary training procedures and has personally helped to train many of the New Zealand’s Rotary presidents over recent years. Libby lead us for a number of thought provoking sessions focusing on personal development and effective communication in regards to leadership. A gold mine of information and experience Libby was an asset to the RYLA experience.

One particular lesson which stood out for me was the idea of conscious leadership and making decisions ‘above or below the line’. The idea behind this is that every decision made (big or small), you either take responsibility or make excuses. A relatively simple idea that may seem obvious to most, but when applied to your everyday life can have quite a confronting impact.
Follow this link to read more and find out what side of the line you’re living on!

Overall RYLA was an extremely positive experience and an amazing opportunity that I’m glad I was able to be a part of. The hard part now is just making sure that everything I learnt is put in to action!

If you would like more information about RYLA and how to apply, visit the Rotary Rotorua Sunrise or the Rotary District 9930 website.

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