Sunday, April 13, 2014

Mentoring Weekend

By - Shehara De Silva,

Yet another successful completion of an annual highlight, the mentoring program held on the 7th, 8th and 9th of March marked an eventful weekend.

The essence of the program like every year was mentoring the students so that they may initiate their Champions of Change project along with the respective partner school. The purpose being the necessity to enable the students to become change agents not only within their own communities but also outside their comfort zones and drive their potential to greater heights.

Students arrived on the 7th, Friday evening at Lyceum International Nugegoda, some after tiresome hours of travelling, still enthusiastic and much awaiting the program ahead. Upon arrival they were registered and schools were partnered. The students were then given a briefing about the program itself and divided into teams that they would remain in for the days to come. The day was wrapped up following dinner and the students were sent off to get some shut eye before the eventful day that awaited them.

The following morning students were greeted with an enthusiastic exercise session that got them up and about. From high knee drills to duck walks the work out was intense and lasted an hour or so. Nevertheless energy filled the hall as the team and students alike prepared for the remaining sessions. The morning was complete with team building activities, team performances that were judged, brainstorming sessions and a briefing about SLU and our vision. The afternoon session was set aside for the schools to meet their partners and for the students to get started with their project proposals. The dream team conducted a presentation educating the students on how to initiate a project, setting objectives, promoting, managing finances and so forth. There was also a panel discussion so the students could learn through first hand experiences of individuals who initiated successful projects and went on to win the challenge.

However like any other mentoring weekend the highlight was the evening and the fun that awaited. The sports session most importantly further integrated the group as the teams participated in various relays and competed against one and other. The day would not be complete however without the traditional campfire. As everyone gathered around the blaze and the days activities slowlycame to an end, excitement filled the ground. The dream team performed a skit leaving everyone in hysterics followed by a pass the parcel session that had certain students having to perform various tasks leaving others to laugh. It was certainly an eventful night that came to a close with the seniors attacking the dream team with buckets of water and a round of flour too.

The following morning students returned to the main hall to spend the last couple of hours finalizing and presenting their project proposals to the team. It was clear that the students were on track and we are certainly looking forward to the initiation of as many of the projects proposed. Following a teaser with regard to the conference and encouragement to be a part of it this year a photo shoot brought the eventful weekend to a close, and I take great pleasure in saying, now all that awaits is the conference. 

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