Sep 5th, 2009 09/05/09 | Community Stories

Now they're back - CCF students' views on their visit to the US

In August CCF sent 5 of its girls to the US to attend the Global Youth Leadership Summit under the aegis of the Anthony Robbins Foundation at the University of San Diego in California. Their trip was an enormous success with all 5 making an individual mark at the summit, often recognized by awards, and the group making a collective and highly positive impact on all who came into contact with them. But how did they feel about the experience? What did they get from it? ‘Before I always looked down at myself, I was scared and weak,’ says Ya Mory Net, ‘but its different before and now.’ What made the difference? ‘I got love from my team, they made me be brave. When they said, “Mory Net you can do it!”, it inspired me all the time. Although I cannot speak English so well, they always comforted me.’ Soem Soknoeurn valued what she learned about teamwork, especially from one of the games; ‘When I played this game, I just knew its meaning. It means that if your team does this game and your team members do not unite, your team will lose. But when your team works together and does not discriminate against each other in terms of race, or poverty, and so on, your team can win.’ And she found that she had to apply some of the conference lessons to her own outlook. ‘When I met other people the first time, they are really polite people, smart, funny, and some are sexy-dressed. But for sexy-dressed people, do not think they are bad people, because we have different cultures. I was at first surprised by the way some of the youth dressed, but after that I learned that it is crossed cultures and we have different cultures.’ Khoeurn Srey Nich appreciated the summit’s matching message about the uniqueness of each of us; ‘It made me feel I am special because I learned that everyone has something which makes people different from one to another and we must not accept if someone looks down on us.’ While everyone valued the instruction and discussion on leadership, communication and unity that ran through the conference, it appears that the major lessons learned were personal and were about freeing up and trusting in their own abilities. ‘Before I joined this program,’ declares Oark Nay Houy, ‘I was so shy, I dared not do something and I am afraid of making mistakes. Now I have no more shyness and I can perform better.’ Seang Srey Lin echoes this feeling and notes that, ‘Now I can change my feeling’. Asked to summarize what she gained from the summit, she smiles, pauses and carefully states; ‘It made me braver and friendlier.’ Mory Net clearly reflects the views of the others, when she considers what difference the summit will make to her own future. ‘I recognize that I am only able to make my dream come true if I put in into action. I want to be a doctor. I want to help poor families with both hands. I want to learn a lot to support my family and my country to overcome the problems that stop us from achieving our goals. To succeed in this, I must step outside my comfort zone and I stop myself from saying: “I cannot.”.’ For all of them, the summit message seems to be; ‘I can.’ 5.9.2009.Story1.Photo1
Written by

CCF Media Team

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