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2015 RYLA Rach Hudson Rachel Hudson, was chosen to participate in The Rotary Youth Leadership Awards (RYLA) course by the club. Rachel thanked the club for her sponsorship as she bagan her talk at the meeting on July 1st 2015.

Rachel recalled the nerve wracking drive to Kangaroobie Camp - what was involved in RYLA, what was my involvent to be? The group was met by happy, smiling adults who were to be the 'care parents' for the week - they were good people. 

The course proved to be an intense journey of challenges delivered through games, music and making new friends - water and mud also featured in the challenges further bonding the new friendships. Rachel explained that much of what happened at RYLA stayed at RYLA referring to her personal journey of discovery.

The power of the camp had participants bouncing off the walls with fire, passion and motivation. Post RYLA Rachel has used the fire, passion and motivation to get back into education and the theatre.

Rachel pictured centre with Sophora Sanders, Exchange Student (left), and Jess Glisson a former club participant in RYLA.  


Each year, thousands of young people ages 14-30 take part in the Rotary Youth Leadership Awards (RYLA) program worldwide.

Participants, who are chosen for their potential as leaders, attend an all-expenses-paid seminar, camp, or workshop to discuss leadership skills and learn them through practice.

Rotary clubs and districts select attendees and facilitate the events. RYLA was officially adopted by Rotary International in 1971, and it is one of the most significant and fastest-growing Rotary service programs.

The Rotary Club of Wendouree Breakfast is actively involved in RYLA and some of our participants can be seen below.


Two successful RYLA applicants, Libby Nugent and Lauren Kirkham were selected by the Rotary Club of Wendouree Breakfast to participate at RYLA 2009 held at Kangaroobie from Monday 13th April - Saturday 18th April, 2009.

RYLA stands for Rotarian Youth Leadership Awards. But it goes much further than a group of 30 people going to a far away camp for 6 days.

After participating at RYLA, Libby and Lauren returned to the Rotary Club of Wendouree Breakfast to share their experience with club members and the following is what Lauren had to say.

It is a physical, emotional and spiritual experience. Something that will stay with you for a long time along with the friendships you make.

For me personally, it was an entirely different challenge. The morning of the trip down to Kangaroobie where the RYLA camp was held, I was struck down with a severe cold. I completely lost my voice and my nostrils caused me intense pain. I feel so sorry for the rest of the camp – who managed to become sick the following week.

I can try and explain RYLA as best I can, but unless you’ve actually experienced it, you will have no idea how much of an impact it had on those who participated. We had all sorts of people attend the event - loud, vivacious people and quiet people with little self esteem – however we all came together and many friendships were created.

The days were long and often confrontational. Everything was discussed, from leadership and how to be a leader in everyday society, through to goal setting and self esteem. Certain things benefited certain people more than others. But all of the discussions and activities which were held during the week were incredibly lifting and brought the group that much closer.

I suppose to a casual observer, the whole experience is the same as a primary school camp. You get up early; have breakfast, some discussions, lunch, then some physical activities and then reflection time before dinner and then some fun games. My favourite activity we did was what we most liked about someone, where a small group of us went around and gave positive feedback to each person. It was nice to see the side of me that people found particularly endearing.

For me, as a mostly self-confident person I found it truly heart warming to watch those people who were particularly insecure within themselves, come out of their shells and go from barely talking to making friends left, right and centre. That really showed me exactly how

The whole experience of RYLA is something you can’t really begin to discuss or even imagine. It turned people with little self-confidence into people who actually respected themselves. It gave those with little or no direction and idea as to what they goals they can set themselves and how to stick to it.

I would highly recommend it to anyone up until the age of 25. Because in all honesty, who of us really have any idea exactly what is going to happen in the next year or even decade?




Jess Glisson and Lachlan Preston spoke to the club on the 2th May 2012 about their experience at RYLA. Rotary Youth Leadership Awards is run annually in Rotray District 9780 where young adults are challenged to identify their strengths and abilities. Once identified these attributes are put ot the test.

The talk accompanied with a powerpoint presentation highlighted a learning environment filled with fun, support and challenge that culminated in friendship and achievement.Words used by Jess and Lauchlan to describe their experience included, took away tools, empowering, individuals can become a team, create a self vision and goals.

During the week they had time to focus on self-reflection that led to identifying values to take forward.