Testimonials

Going into RYLA my first year I had absolutely no idea what I was getting myself into, but I am so glad that I got myself into it. There is not a more supportive and nurturing environment than that which is created by the amazing people who work together to make RYLA happen. I use the things I learned at RYLA every day and I cannot wait to keep learning in the future.

 

I been to two RYLA's now and still I've yet to find the proper words to describe this experience. You put a bunch of total strangers at a college for four days and essentially watch a mystery unfold. It never ceases to amaze me, the genuine love and camaraderie that manifests itself in the hearts and minds of everyone involved. And as long as I have the chance, I'll make it my business to come back for more and more.

 

RYLA is a place of acceptance.  Halfway through my first RYLA, I felt for the first time that absolutely no one was judging me.  Everyone has a story, and this program has given me the confidence to really be myself.  As soon as my first RYLA was over, I knew I just HAD to come back.  I want to inspire others the same way this amazing program and newfound family have inspired me. heart

 

"A life is not important except in the impact it has on other lives." - Jackie Robinson. Nowhere is this more obvious than at RYLA. Eye opening and life changing, RYLA has definitely had an impact on my life. I've gained confidence, dozens of friends, and leadership skills to last me a lifetime over the course of 4 days. I cannot imagine how different my life would be right now if I did not attend RYLA.

 

RYLA. An indescribable, yet absolutely amazing experience. Those unforgettable four days truly changed me and had a positive impact on my personality. I broke out of my comfort zone and even surprised myself with the great things I was capable of doing! RYLA taught me the qualities of a real leader and how to become one myself! The true meaning of friendship, trust, confidence, and love was expressed every second, every day of RYLA. Thanks to RYLA, I now have a new sense of confidence to show, a great group of close friends to share an experience with, and a second family to always count on.

 

“They all loved you before they even knew you.” Those words have yet to leave my heart since the final days of RYLA. It proved to me that the family I had formed over four days, from just initially strangers, was just as strong as the family I had known for a lifetime. RYLA showed me the strongest form of love there is and I am so grateful to have experienced it. Now that I have such love I won’t ever let it from my heart. When I say to myself that “I can do anything”, well, this time I actually mean it. Now, after looking back, I know that I can also love those I’ve yet to meet, as so long as I remember my experiences at RYLA.

 

RYLA takes the shells of closed up and rather frightful teenagers, and shows them all their worldly potential. Luckily, I was one of those timid teens, who was cracked open and instantly thrust into an intimate circle of RYLA-ready leaders, and world-ready friends.

 

RYLA taught me how to a good leader in a group by giving everybody's idea a chance. It also gave me stage confidence and comfort with being myself around a huge group of strangers. I plan to use that and go out for the next school play!  cheeky

 

Attending RYLA was one of the best decisions I've ever made. I truly learned the meaning of stepping out of my comfort zone and working together with others. I accomplished more than I ever thought I was capable of and am now a stronger leader as well as a better person in general. I have a second family aswell and it was a life-changing experience I recommend to anyone and everyone.
 

RYLA isn't something that can be described easily, because it's not anything like a typical sleep-away "camp". RYLA will become a home to anyone who attends. There is so much love and kindness, you can't help but feel like you're a part of one big family. There's a place for anyone and everyone. RYLA helped me feel like I belong, and gave me such a strong sense of support from everyone I met. It's scary at first, but in a matter of minutes, you'll find someone just as nervous as you, and you'll make friends instantly. I feel like I’m an all-around better person, with friendships and memories to last me a lifetime.

I personally believe that every community group, band, theatre company, choir, sports team, to government reflects a well-versed leader. After RYLA, I am confident in being that leading light. The light that shines upon communities to small groups, the light that can illuminate the world along with the other millions of leaders because with the skills that I have developed, along with the tremendous community there can be a change in the world: us.
 

RYLA gave me an experience like no other. It showed me that I am more than capable of being an excellent leader and everyone on my team brought me out of my shell more and more every day. I know that everyone in my RYLA family has my back from this day forward and that is not something everyone is able to experience in their life time!
 

Among the countless, valuable leadership skills I gained at RYLA, I learned that being a leader means opening up and trusting others. Before RYLA, I had difficulty communicating and expressing my ideas. Now I am confident that I can step up in my community and accomplish more having been through this program. RYLA was the best weekend of my life, and I have finally found a place where I truly belong.

Ralph Waldo Emerson wrote, "No man can help another without helping himself." RYLA has taught me the powerful truth within this quote. At RYLA we strive to better one another while we ourselves are also learning and growing. How rewarding it is to learn that in giving comfort, we receive it too; and always at the same time- always.

RYLA not only taught me how to lead and give people a chance, it made me realize what my potential was to do great things. Over four days I opened up to complete strangers and grew tremendously. With the help of RYLA I have accomplished many things I've set out to do in my life. RYLA has empowered me and changed my life. Last but not least I now have a second family with me wherever I go.laugh

RYLA gave me a golden opportunity to express myself and be confident in all that I do. It is far more than a leadership camp; it is an amazing experience that did teach me how to be an ultimate leader, but also taught me how to accomplish the goals I vision. On the first day, we all arrived knowing hardly anyone, however by the fourth day, we all became one loving family, and that is something I will always remember!