Leadership by Example: Changing lives and developing valuable skills
Leadership by Example: Changing lives and developing valuable skills

Leadership by Example: Changing lives and developing valuable skills

Camp counselor demonstrates the importance of water safety by being an example.

Youth attending Dunrovin Retreat Center’s programs are challenged with difficult physical tasks every day, from scaling a 20-foot wall to completing a trust fall.

For students in Dunrovin’s DLITE leadership program, however, the most daunting task is giving a short testimonial to the group of campers.

In this three-minute testimonial, DLITE students share their faith, their struggles, and their vulnerabilities. By sharing personal stories, these students challenge themselves and also act as an example for the campers who listen.

These testimonials are just one way that youth leaders and campers learn to lead by example.

Throughout the camps, DLITE students exemplify leadership in ways that are subtle but powerful:

  • They guide prayers, musical worship, and activities.
  • They lead table discussions during meals.
  • They conduct themselves in kind, responsible, and faith-filled ways.

By leading by example, these students naturally educate younger campers on valuable skills. Campers instinctually learn how to lead, grow in their faith, and make a difference in the world-all by simply observing the older students.

Leadership at Dunrovin

Leading by example is not limited to DLITE students alone. Counselors, DLITE team members, and campers all learn how to be leaders, since the youth follow the example of those instructing them and naturally learn valuable skills.

Since they are the oldest and most experienced, the counselors lead DLITE members and campers. DLITE members then lead the younger campers, thanks to the skills they have learned from the counselors. In turn, the campers are inspired to lead each other, develop their skills, and grow in faith.

Perhaps the most powerful example of this method is the faith lived out at Dunrovin.

“Campers see DLITE counselors actively living out their faith,” said Director Jerome Meeds. “As a result, they grow in their faith because of the example set by our young leaders.”

Below Meeds explains how leadership by example is taught at Dunrovin.

Why the leadership by example method

As Meeds explains in this video, leadership by example is the main technique used by Dunrovin for two key reasons:

  1. “It’s contagious, it grows, it expands.” This method encourages youth to follow good examples and develop their own skills.
  2. “We give the students who attend leadership programs an opportunity to practice leadership by example.” These students are first taught (largely by example) how to be leaders. They then use their skills to lead the campers who come to Dunrovin.

Youth are therefore inspired to grow in faith, leadership skills, and more. These significant aspects of leadership by example allow Dunrovin’s programs to not only work, but flourish.

Whether used in retreats, camps, or other programs at Dunrovin, leadership by example is a method that truly impacts youth. It fosters spiritual growth, strong leadership, and skills that can be used in everyday life. This technique, then, closely follows Dunrovin’s mission to educate youth and better the world.

To learn more about Dunrovin’s youth programs, call 651-433-2486