Camp Lessons: Teamwork… Perseverance… Breakthroughs

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What an AMAZING first Summit Life Leadership Camp of the summer! Students’ lives were truly changed during this intense week. We are changing the trajectory of students’ lives, causing them to see life from a whole new perspective. At camp, students had the opportunity to take a deep, hard look inside. Through this, they were able to process and take on different challenges through experiential learning.

You see, our students come from all different walks of life. Some students come from loving, supportive homes which is wonderful. However, some of our students are not as fortunate. Some of our students come from broken homes… foster care… abusive parents… poverty… the list goes on. They have been forced to grow up too fast. Some of our students have never felt loved – they have never been told that they are worthy and that they have a future. They are on the edge and not sure which way to go. At Summit Life Leadership Camp, we deal with really tough issues. It is our goal that every student that leaves camp feels loved, empowered, and prepared to take on some of the challenges they are facing. Over the next few weeks, you will hear some of these stories of impact.

This year, we decided to try something new for the Boating Challenge – lake AND ground challenges. The purpose of this challenge is to encourage students to work as a team, face their fears, and put their leadership skills to the test. We stress the importance of working together because when we all work together, we win. Through these challenges, the students feel a sense of community and that they do not have to face all of life’s challenges alone. While some of these challenges may seem insignificant, the impact is lasting.

The teams were split up by their cabins to compete against each other and the first obstacle was to get around the rescue boat. Aubrey Greene, Lake Director, watched from the boat.

“As the challenge progressed, one of the boats with two girls was really struggling with rowing. As the girls fell further and further behind, it would have been very easy to get frustrated with the situation. However, when they finally made it to the rescue boat, it was clear to see that they were making the best of the situation. The navigator was being so encouraging and helping the rower the best she could. It was awesome to see these students figure out how to communicate well and keep a positive attitude regardless of their circumstances.”

It was obvious the girls were not going to win the challenge since the other boat of boys finished the ground puzzle much earlier. However, something incredible happened…

“The boys didn’t just sit back and wait for the girls. Instead, they decided to go over and help the girls to finish their puzzle and worked together as a family. The cabin teams really meshed well and you could see that they were really functioning as a family as the week went on.”

If you just look at this story on the surface, it may not seem all that significant, but if you dig deeper, this experience holds great meaning.

The girls used perseverance and courage to finish the challenge. They could have given up when it got difficult, but they kept rowing. The boys could have reveled in their victory, but instead they chose to help the girls finish the puzzle. Why did they do that? They understood a very important life lesson in teamwork: when we all work together, we all win.

We are so proud of the incredible steps that were taken during our first Summit Life Leadership Camp of the summer. We are SO excited for the next camp. If you would like to donate to our Summit Life Leadership Camp Scholarship Fund to send more students to this life-changing camp, click here! Also, like our Facebook page to get updates from our next camp in July!

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