Tuesday, 1 July 2014

Batangas 2014: WYA

Here I am, posting after a year of not being active on this blog, my apologies. In that span of time, a lot of things happened, I mean a lot. But the main thing I want to share with you guys is my experience at the World Youth Alliance Asia Pacific Summer Camp. It’s an annual thing, this “summer camp” and it’s a place wherein people aging from 15-30 gather to learn about the importance of one’s human dignity whether it be from society’s POV or the United Nations’.

I was lucky enough to be given this opportunity to meet amazing people from all over the Pacific region. (special mention; HEY RISDY!) I was basically stuck with these people for 5 days without cellular connection or Wireless connection whatsoever, but hey, I survived, that’s the good thing. What I’m trying to say is…. human interaction isn’t that bad after all! (and I’m the socially awkward one) I’ve met the most amazing people, the coolest facilitators and the nicest resort staff and it was all because of the summer camp.

What is World Youth Alliance you might ask? Well, it’s a non-governmental organization that promotes to human dignity of each person, despite their background, race, and or, standards of living, people ranging between 10-30 can become a member and share with other people, what it means to have this intrinsic dignity within each of us.

Now more on the camp details and my experience of it. On the first day, I was almost late, I arrived exactly at 5:30 AM, the deadliest deadline of it all. The moment we arrived at Palm Beach Resort, we were sorted into our different groups namely; Team Dignity, Team Freedom, Team Solidarity and Team Culture. Lucky for me, I already knew one of my group mates even before the camp. (Louie)  We were also grouped with the bedrooms and all, thank goodness, my AC friend Faye and well.. Hannah Tupas were my rommates, but not to mention Kat from Ateneo De Iloilo! She’s cool.

On the second day, we’ve now discussed chapter 2 and 3 of the WYA manual, it’s a really thick book with no pictures, that was how we studied, never the less, it was alright, I survived. After a long day of discussion and answer-writing, we all decided to take a dip in the pool because we deserved it and it was a great opportunity for us to get to meet the other campers. By the way, the food was alright, mediocre is the best way to describe it. (Just sharing; lol)

We watched a film on the third day! “The Boy In The Stripped Pajamas” that movie was very….. eventful, even Ate Cam, one of the most adorable person I’ve ever met, from the Ateneo De Manila University, was seated beside me after the movie, in tears because of what she felt after seeing that the boy died with the other Jews inside the concentration camp. (spoiler)  She was so cute I wanted to hug her.

Then on the fourth day…… It was the most exhausting day out of all of them combined. We had the amazing race and we were against the other groups. So me being the tiniest, but not really the weakest, I had to skip some obstacles, because I have short limbs and I’m really suck-ish when it comes to things that require the physical strength. I mean come on, look how tiny I am compared to my teammates.

On the night of the fourth day, things got pretty emotional. Most of us were crying because we were already giving each other the cheesy goodbyes. We also exchanged strings that would symbolize the different necessities in life whether it be money or happiness… even peace of mind. (I mostly got blue…. which symbolizes peace of mind; they think I’m that crazy. Guys please)  The color Sky Blue symbolizes “inspiration” but I won’t tell you, who gave it to me. Hihi.

Before I forget to mention, we also had to memorize the Cups Song, so on the fourth day, our facilitators decided to record all of us, on camera, doing the Cups song, of course, while beating to the sound of the cups. I had lots of fun, teaching them how to do it.

Finally… it was the fifth day of camp. Judgement day, or to the common knowledge of everyone from the camp, it was Accreditation Day. We had different types of tests. There was an individual oral test, and of course a group test, but for me, the individual test was much easier, probably because I was given easier questions compared to my co-campers’ .

It was a sad day for all of us because we had to say goodbye for the last time, and just to sum it up, there were lots of hugging and cheesy lines from each and every one of us because we know we’re going to have this separation anxiety within each of us the moment, we leave camp. (Up until now, we still have separation anxiety)
Thank goodness, the summer for my last year of High School was productive. I mean despite the review for the UP College Entrance test, this summer camp made everything worthwhile. I love each and everyone of my co-campers and I’m proud to call each one of them a friend and there’s Hannah of course.  (credits to Kuya Yoe and WYA Asia Pacifc for some of the cool pictures found in this post)

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