Telling the Real “Story of my life”
As they tweet, gram, snap and scroll, and feed an insatiable appetite for likes and affirmation, it is easy for young people to focus on their online personas, losing touch with their real identities.
Our youth members at JYC @ Children’s Society had the opportunity to escape that during last year’s GIG camp, held from 12 to 14 November 2018 at Civil Service Club @ Changi.
The theme this year was “Story of my life”, and the 20 attendees, aged 13 to 15, and were encouraged to break from their online personalities and to get back in touch with their real identities and desires.
They participated in brainstorm sessions and even created an “IRL” (In Real Life) Instagram page. They were also encouraged to challenge their limits, including during a kayaking journey around Pulau Ubin. In the process, they became more conscious of their aspirations and self-expectations.
The camp was designed with increasing the assets of our youth based on the 40 Developmental Assets developed by Search Institute. These 40 positive supports and strengths that young people need to succeed and make healthy decisions include support from family and other adults, social competencies such as decision-making skills, a sense of purpose, and a positive view of their futures.
A surprise highlight for the youth was when staff facilitators distributed letters written by their parents and guardians, each containing their hopes and aspirations for the young adults. It prompted a mixture of quiet reflection, outbursts of joy, and even some tears.
“The camp helped them redefine success, understand that it is fine for them not to succumb to societal pressures and expectations, accept themselves for who they are, and recognise the difference between social media and real-life expectations,” said Mr Benedict Kuah, Deputy Director/ Head at JYC @ Children’s Society.
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Letters from Home: Our participants were surprised with letters from parents and guardians setting their real-life hopes and aspirations
What you see is what you get: Our GIG participants learnt to reconnect with their true selves