In the past, 15-year-old Jolene would feel nervous whenever she had to stand and speak in front of her class. Due to her lack of confidence, she also found it challenging to lead a group. Sometimes, she would feel lost and helpless not knowing what to say or how to respond to her team mates who have different personalities and opinions. When faced with a problem, she would rather ignore than fix it.
All these changed when Jolene attended her school’s Service-Learning (S-L) camp organised by TOUCH Leadership & Mentoring as part of Project C.L.A.S.S (Compassionate Leaders Always Serving Society). Through the camp activities and with encouragement from the TOUCH mentors, she learnt to have a more positive mindset, discover her strengths and gained the courage to overcome her challenges. Jolene realised that being a leader is not just about position; it is about influence, in being able to make a difference. More importantly, Jolene learnt the importance of working as a team to achieve one’s goals. She was also taught the ropes of communicating effectively with others and how to motivate her team. All these knowledge and experiences enabled Jolene to enjoy a closer rapport with her peers at the S-L camp. Working as a team, specific roles were assigned to each member followed by a detailed planning from the start to finish. As an effective facilitator, she was able to work together to find solutions to problems and help resolve disagreements quickly, enabling the team to finish the task within a shorter period of time.
Jolene knows that as long as she puts her mind and effort into something she believes in, she can have the courage to set higher goals for herself. There is never an end to learning as long as one has the right attitude and is teachable. Jolene is happy as she has seen positive changes in her life. In a few months, Jolene gradually grew in her role as a leader to become the Chairperson of her school’s Co-Curricular Activities and the Vice-Head of the Student Council Board 2013. Jolene is now a confident and happy teenager who has great aspirations in life. Her teachers are encouraged to see her mentoring other youths and spurring them to achieve their dreams.