RYLA Facilitators 2017
On April 7-9, 2017, four members of our club participated in the RYLA (Rotary Youth Leadership Awards) in Idyllwild, CA.  It was a rewarding experience for both the students and the facilitators. Here are their stories of their time with these amazing kids.
"This was my 6th RYLA as a facilitator and I appreciate the experience more each year.  One of the most impactful moments for me was when Fari Moini gave her impassioned presentation about the situation which women in Islamic countries face and then having donned a burqa, she said:  "And you think you have problems?" I don't think there was any student or adult who was not moved by that moment. More than ever RYLA serves a valuable role in helping our future leaders deal with the daily challenges and adversity that they face, and see how just one individual can make a positive impact on those in need.  It is honor and so inspiring to be part of RYLA - thank you Rotary!" - Joe Ramirez
"Another incredible weekend! Watching these students blossom over a three day period is so incredibly rewarding. I am so grateful to be apart of RYLA. 
It starts out the same....the students have no idea what to expect. They really would rather be with their own friends that are part of another family. By the afternoon they have already let their guard down. You can see the bonds growing as they continue to be inspired by the speakers and reveal more of themselves to each other. By the middle of day two they have formed lasting friendships. The transformation in each student is evident. It's really something. Hard to put into words the impact it has on you. I would recommend this experience to every Rotarian  (without me giving up my spot :)" - Rita Famulare
"RYLA 2017 is a history now, emotions are settling down but a deep connection and a sense of empowerment will stay with me forever. As a facilitator, my role is to make sure our young leaders get to where they have to be, encourage them to communicate and have fun. I do just that, and somewhere along the way, I get really attached to my family and RYLA staff. I belong, I grow, and I gain courage to be happy. RYLA changes everybody’s life, invigorates and makes a positive impact on all participants." - Kashia Trojanowska
"I was blown away by the intensity of RYLA this year!  The Rotary staff, returning alumni, and guest speakers generated enormous amounts of energy and excitement that lifted the students to new heights and created life-changing experiences.  My RYLA family clicked immediately, becoming fast, close friends that respect, love and support each other.  The biggest highlight of the weekend for my RYLA family was a LIVE Skype Q&A session with high a school girls’ class in Afghanistan at the school established by Fary Moini from the La Jolla Golden Triangle Rotary Club.  I am confident everyone who attended RYLA this year will remember it for the rest of their lives." - Mark Schafer