Last Sunday, 29 January, 31 young people from across the South Island and Wellington met as strangers at Lakeland Park Camp, Kelvin Heights and left as friends.
They had endured a very hot week of relentless speakers and activities, from 6am through till 9.30pm, some nights till 10pm.  They capped it off and let their hair down at the Gala awards night on Thursday before, for some, a tearful farewell on Friday.
Exhausted but with a deep sense of personal and collective satisfaction, they went their separate ways knowing they had made life-long new friends, new vocational contacts and that they also have left their legacy at the camp.  The Gully Project working bee and the Camp Project (a GPS Geo-caching project) proves the value of this leadership programme on the community and for themselves.
If you haven’t yet been involved in some way, or haven’t visited the camp, you are missing out.  They really are inspirational young people as the visitors to the Rotary BBQ Dinner on Tuesday witnessed as well as at the Gala Awards Dinner evening.  I really do hope you can come along next year to see what the ‘RYLA magic’ is.
D9999 RYLA Queenstown Facilitator