(WYA Headquarters, New York City) Earlier this month, WYA NA concluded its 11th annual International Summer Camp (ISC), a leadership development program and cultural immersion opportunity for WYA members ages 13 – 18. This year’s ISC engaged campers and counselors from 9 different countries and from 4 of WYA’s regions. Participants represented Canada, Dominican Republic, Italy, Lithuania, Philippines, Romania, Russia, Spain, and the United States.
The ISC featured philosophy and advocacy training based on WYA’s Certified Training Program (CTP) and White Papers. The training offered a person-centered lens for objectively analyzing the effectiveness of current international policies. It taught why and how the value of human dignity serves as the foundation of authentic development and leads to a prosperous and flourishing society. Additionally, it prepared campers to participate in a mock United Nations commission negotiation, an exercise that enabled campers to realize the power of language in UN declarations, and its implications for global policies and international law.
Campers, counselors, and staff enjoyed exploring New York’s various neighborhoods, including Brooklyn, Coney Island Beach, lower Manhattan, and Midtown Manhattan. They also enjoyed cultural activities, such as a traditional Filipino boodle fight dinner, Latin dancing, and a talent show. These fun, shared experiences aimed to foster authentic friendship and to engage campers in the lived experience of human dignity.
Through academic discovery and personal engagement, the 2018 ISC aimed to equip participants with the formation essential to authentic leadership, a position that uses one’s gifts and talents to uphold the dignity of every human person.
Written by Meagan Robinson, WYA NA B2 Intern and Julia Kenney, WYA NA Regional Director of Operations. Photo by Lord Pomperada, WYA President