Learning to step outside of their bubbles

Dec 29, 2022 | Education

pryde 2022 1

Rotarian Kyleigh Milson with Mac Frank and Avery Norbryhn. (Photo by Mary-Justine Lanyon)

pryde 2022 2
Mason Johnstone, Kashlynn Canova and John Knapp shared about their experiences at PRYDE. (Photo by Mary-Justine Lanyon

pryde 2022 3
Some of the PRYDE campers at Thousand Pines in Crestline. (Photo by Rudy Westervelt)

Learning to step outside of their bubbles

By Mary-Justine Lanyon

As the 14 seventh-graders from Mary Putnam Henck Intermediate School and the Lake Arrowhead Christian School headed to PRYDE waited to board the bus to Thousand Pines Conference Center, their nerves were showing. Despite having been briefed on what to expect, the students were understandably nervous about heading off into the unknown.
When they returned the following day – having spent two days with their peers from around the Inland Empire – their mood was decidedly different. In fact, they got off the bus singing.
PRYDE – Personal Rotary Youth Development Experience – is a leadership camp sponsored by Rotary clubs in Rotary District 5330. The three clubs in the Rim communities interviewed and selected the 14 students they sponsored.
A number of the students visited with their sponsoring clubs to share their experiences. Some also made videos to share with the Rotarians.
“I was very excited when I found out I was chosen,” Mac Frank told members of the Mountain Sunrise Rotary Club. “I heard a lot of stories about kids who have not had a great life.”
Mac said his favorite part was “getting to meet other kids who are like-minded to me.”
Avery Norbryhn agreed her favorite part was “meeting new people and doing games for teamwork. I play soccer so I’m big on teamwork.”
In her video, Alyssa Powers said she was nervous at first. What she will remember most is all the people she met, especially a camper from Temecula she became good friends with. “Thank you for choosing me to attend,” Alyssa said.
“I really liked the activities,” Leonardo Vitale Moreno said in his video. “And working with my group to solve problems.” He also liked the motivational speaker, Scott Greenberg, and thanked Rotary for inviting him to participate in PRYDE.
The students sponsored by the Lake Arrowhead Rotary Club all mentioned how anxious they were when they checked in and saw they didn’t know anyone in their cabin or their small discussion group. But then they all said how friendly everyone was and their anxiety quickly vanished.
Dahlia Encoe highlighted Scott Greenberg’s phrase, “Cut loose your sandbags.” Sandbags, she explained, represent the things holding you back. “We have to get rid of those ideas and thoughts so we can become the true person we are,” she said.
Landon Beqari shared this thought from Greenberg: “When something bad happens to you, there can be something good inside of it and when something seems good, there can be something bad in it.”
Referring to what Greenberg called “the voice in your head,” Preston Beqari said you have to listen to that voice and decide if it’s true. “If we believe the inner voice that tells us we can’t do something, it keeps us from trying something that might work out really well for us.”
At the Crestline-Lake Gregory Rotary Club, the sponsored students said that, while at PRYDE, they wrote letters to homeless children.
As for the most important thing they learned, Mason Johnstone said he learned that “leaders work well when they work together.” He has committed himself to meeting more people – “kids who need friends.”
“The first day,” said John Knapp, “I just wanted to stay in my group. Then I opened up to meeting new friends.”
Kashlynn Canova also talked about Scott Greenberg and sandbags. “Sandbags stop us. You have to break them to move forward. Don’t listen to what other people tell you about yourself.”
“It’s OK to get out of your bubble and become friends,” John added.
Kashlynn noted she is friends with lots of sixth-graders and has been telling them they should go to PRYDE next year.
When asked if they learned any techniques for addressing bullying, Kashlynn said they learned how to break it up. “You should get both sides of the story,” she said, “and just be cool with each other.”
Summing up the students’ experience at PRYDE, Kashlynn told the Rotarians, “I didn’t want to leave camp.”


Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


groundwerks quarter page ad page 0001
rim bowling center generic 7 11 22 web
Brandi Douglas trustees list

Brandi Douglas trustees list

Brandi Douglas   Crestline resident named to trustees’ list   Crestline resident Brandi Douglas was named to the Champlain College Trustees' List for the Fall 2022 semester, having achieved a 4.0 grade point average for two or more consecutive semesters....

Crestline resident named to trustees’ list

Crestline resident named to trustees’ list

Brandi Douglas Crestline resident Brandi Douglas was named to the Champlain College Trustees' List for the Fall 2022 semester, having achieved a 4.0 grade point average for two or more consecutive semesters. Founded in 1878, Champlain College is a small,...