Posted on Jun 02, 2017
At our meeting on May 30, 2017, the theme for the day was Leadership.  This is in keeping with the statement that "Rotary is a Leadership Organization" that we answer when we are asked "What is  Rotary?"
RYLA Students Poorvi Dattak,
Nikhil Penugonda,Katie Chau, Ashley Lo and Camille Pino
RB Sunrise President Craig Brown with Karen Ogden  from Sole Effects
The program for the meeting showcased two examples of how RB Sunrise Rotary fulfills the commitment to Leadership in what we do. The first example is RYLA - the Rotary Youth Leadership Awards camp.  The second example is Sole Effects, a program for 8th and 9th grade students that develops leadership skill in students that they very often don't realize they have.

The first example of promoting Leadership was  the showcase of junior students from Scripps Ranch High School who attended RYLA (Rotary Youth Leadership Awards).  RYLA is a weekend leadership training event at a camp at Idyllwild, CA. At the camp, all of the students, who were chosen because they already had demonstrated leadership ability, are assigned to "families".  None of the other students are from the same school.  During the weekend, the students get to know one another and do various tasks to build leadership skills. They hear motivational speakers who challenge them to use their leadership skills in new ways.
The five students that RB Sunrise Rotary Club sponsored at RYLA are shown above.  Each spoke of the ways that the weekend camp challenged them and changed their life.  Each added that they were going to be doing more in the projects they already were leading.
The second organization we heard about was SOLE Effects.  RB Sunrise Rotary Club donated a $5500 grant to SOLE Effects to cover the costs of their program in the next school year. In the photo above,
Sole Effects is a leadership mentoring program that is led by college students who are  trained in ways to teach 7th and 8th graders.  The college students are used because they are closer in age to the students being mentored and therefore can bond with them.  The middle school students often learn about leadership abilities they didn't realize they had.  The college student leaders also benefit because they are monitored and get feedback on how well they are doing their mentoring.  One example of the success of the program was told by one of the college leaders. 
The SOLE Effects program is designed to have the middle school students discover and develop leadership skills.  By developing thos skills they are getting valuable training for success in high school and beyond.
One of the mentors told of a child who came to the first meeting and kept to himself.  After viewing a video, he volunteered that the video wasn't very well done.  He volunteered to do video editing for Sole Effects.  It was after that that the mentors learned that this boy had autism.  The fact that he opened up to others was a testament to the effectiveness of the SOLE effects training methods and approach.