10th Interact-RYLA Boot Camp: A Journey of Leadership and Hope

By Trixcy Clar | Posted on April 20, 2024

Alta Cebu Village Garden Resort was abuzz with energy and anticipation as delegates from District 3860 gathered for the 10th Interact-RYLA Boot Camp hosted by the Rotaract Club of Banilad Metro. The theme, “Leading with H.O.P.E.”, set the tone for a transformative experience that would leave an indelible mark on the participants.

The boot camp spanned two intense days, packed with activities designed to nurture leadership skills, foster personal growth, and ignite a sense of purpose. As the sun rose on March 23, the air crackled with excitement. Delegates, some familiar faces and others strangers, went aboard on a shared adventure toward self-discovery and community impact.

Day One: Building Bridges and Tropical Vibes

The function hall served as the canvas for the opening program. Here, under the banner of unity, everyone gathered—Interactors, Rotaractors, and Rotarians. The room buzzed with anticipation as the camp’s objectives were laid out.

The real magic, however, was uncloaked during the teambuilding activities. Eight groups, each with its own unique blend of personalities, tackled challenges at eight different stations. Strangers became teammates, and old friends discovered new facets of each other. Laughter echoed through the resort as bonds formed over shared victories and setbacks.

Team. The teambuilding activities commence with Group 8 working with their mind, body, and spirit alignment activity.

As the sun dipped below the horizon, the fellowship dinner commenced. The theme? “IGNITE! HOPE in the TROPICS.” Delegates donned their most vibrant tropical outfits, celebrating diversity and camaraderie. Acoustic melodies filled the air, and fire dancers mesmerized the crowd. But it was RYLA’s Next Got Talent that stole the show. Group 3 wowed the audience, leaving no doubt about their star quality.

Late into the night, some delegates cooled off in the resort’s swimming pool, while others huddled over project proposals. The second day loomed, promising more challenges and opportunities.

Day Two: From Inspiration to Action

The morning sun found everyone gathered once again, this time in the presence of Melchor “Chock” P. Encabo, Charter President of Rotary Club Escolta (District 3810). His words resonated—a call to lead with purpose, empathy, and resilience. The delegates absorbed his wisdom, ready to translate it into action.

The outreach program followed—an excursion to Children’s Haven, a nearby haven for underprivileged kids. Delegates gave healthy kits and shared foods, where the laughter of children mingled with the rustle of leaves, reinforcing the camp’s core message: leadership is service above self.

Lead. Gerald Nitz Ponce takes the lead as the host for the outreach program of Children’s Haven.

And then came the pinnacle—the project pitching competition. Eight groups stepped onto the stage, their proposals centered around “Supporting the Environment.” Each pitch was a mosaic of passion, innovation, and commitment. From protecting the indigenous to plastic waste reduction campaigns, the ideas flowed creatively.

After comprehensive deliberation, one group claimed victory: Group 6 (Team Tukmo). Their project proposal, titled “FOODWISE: Framework for Optimizing Organizational Dynamics in Waste Reduction and Sustainability Efforts,” captured the hearts and minds of the panelists.

As the curtain fell on the 10th Interact-RYLA Boot Camp, tired but inspired faces exchanged farewells. The Alta Cebu Village Garden Resort held memories of growth, laughter, and hope. And in the hearts of these young leaders, seeds were sown—seeds that would blossom into a future where H.O.P.E. led the way.

Hope. In the heartwarming gathering of children during the outreach program, hope radiates from their eager faces.

The boot camp was an immensely transformative journey for me. As someone who was relatively new to Rotary, Rotaract, and Interact, I took off on this adventure with curiosity and an open heart. Little did I know that my desire to connect with external organizations and actively engage with the community would lead me to Rotary—a place that now feels like home, my safe haven.

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