Posted by Bonnie Branciaroli on May 30, 2021
Rotary Clubs around the world work with their Districts and Rotary International to build leadership skills in interested youth through the Rotary Youth Leadership Awards (RYLA) program. RYLA is an intensive leadership experience where young people can develop leadership skills while having fun and making connections with other like-minded youth within their region. There are other leadership building organizations as well, and our program today focuses upon OH-WV YLA, the Ohio-West Virginia Youth Leadership Association and the local YLA Leadership Summit at Camp Horseshoe in Tucker County, West Virginia.




PRESIDING TODAY IS: Bonnie Branciaroli, President

bellDing! We’re now in session.

Welcome, all – visitors, fellow Rotarians, and guests alike to this E-Club program!

Remember the Four-Way Test!

At the beginning of each meeting, we remind ourselves of The Four-Way Test.  Therefore, please remember to ask yourself always . . .

Of the things we think, say, or do:

  1. Is it the TRUTH?
  2. Is it FAIR to all concerned?
  4. Will it be Beneficial to all concerned?

A Reflective Moment

“People tell me I should study to become a climate scientist so I can solve the climate crisis. But the climate crisis has already been solved. We already have all the facts and solutions. All we have to do is to wake up and change .”
       – Greta Thunberg, Swedish environmental activist internationally known for challenging world leaders to take immediate action for climate change mitigation.

Leadership Quotes

“If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more, and become more, you are a leader.”
       – John Quincy Adams, American statesman, diplomat, lawyer, and diarist who served as the sixth president of the United States from 1825 to 1829.

“We cannot always build the future for our youth, but we can build our youth for the future.”
     – Franklin D. Roosevelt, an American politician who served as the 32nd president of the United States from 1933 until his death in 1945.
“The duty of youth is to challenge corruption.”
     – Kurt Cobain, American singer, songwriter, and musician, best known as the guitarist, primary songwriter, and frontman of the rock band Nirvana.

“Rather than standing or speaking for children, we need to stand with children speaking for themselves. We don’t need a political movement for children… [we need to] build environments and policies for our collective future.”
     — Sandra Meucci, contemporary author of social justice focusing upon promising ways to develop new policy issues and constituencies within the current children’s policy landscape.



June 25-26 – District 7545 Installation of District Governor 21-22, David Cooper on Friday and Saturday, District Assembly for all club members within the district.

Registration and Itinerary:  See DACdb


YLA Leadership Summit, Camp Horseshoe, June 20-26, 2021

As our club has done in the past several years, we sent a call-out to members interested in connecting with local schools to find possible applicants for the 2021 RYLA program. Due to COVID-19, the program in mid-May 2021 was available through virtual means only. We received no participant inquiries, so ventured into another summer camp leadership summit for the first time, the Ohio-West Virginia Youth Leadership Association's Leadership Summit at Camp Horseshoe in Tucker County.
According to a letter sent by Sharon Cassidy, Administrative Assistant of the YLA Leadership Summit Horseshoe Leadership Center in Parsons, WV, the YLA camps were held in-person during the summer of May 2020 with new COVID-19 protocols in place. The season ended successfully with zero positive cases. This information helped guide our Board of Directors to the decision to offer scholarships to three West Virginia students (7th - 12th grades) to the YLA Leadership Summit June 20-26.

What is the OH-WV YLA?

With more than 150 years of experience, the Youth Leadership Association has been building up generations of youth across Ohio and West Virginia. Tracing roots back to 1867, the organization has nurtured young men and women by inspiring them with the organization's five pillars: Leadership, Character, Service, Entrepreneurship, and Philanthropy.

The organization, which began as a State YMCA, adopted a more generalized mission in 1992 to help youth develop leadership and citizenship skills for a lifelong commitment to service through character-building programs.

Camp Horseshoe

Camp Horseshoe was built by the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) in 1938-39 for the United States Forest Service to be operated by a not-for-profit. Once constructed in 1940, the United States Forest Service turned to the State YMCA of West Virginia, [now the Youth Leadership Association (YLA)], to operate Horseshoe. This partnership continues today at the camp located near Saint George in Tucker County, WV.

Whether it is teenagers at Entrepreneurship or a Leadership Summit or low-income children at the Governor’s Youth Opportunity Camps (YOC), the results are the same: Lives change, and campers return home ready to become their best, help their communities and build a better tomorrow.

Our Scholarship Recipients

All three of our scholarship recipients will be attending the YLA Leadership Summit in mid-June. The students will practice leadership skills in organizations, communication, teamwork, and group dynamics through effective governance. They'll learn how to value doing for others, as well as how to improve their school and community. All the while, the students will be prepared to have fun in this classic camp atmosphere deep in the center of the Monongahela National Forest!

The scholarship of $315 per student, total: $945, was paid by our Rotary E-Club dues with a 50% reimbursement from our District 7545 Grant program.

Meet Our Three Students

Meet Morgan Davis

Morgan Alexandria Davis is the daughter of Josh and Julie Davis of Elkins and the late Judy Lynn Davis. She is a rising junior at Elkins High School, where she is known as a leader who helps other students. 
Morgan loves the country, enjoys the great outdoors, and is a creative artist planning a future career in professional photography. She is active at Otterbein United Methodist Church and serves in her church on the technology team, where she helps people worship safely from home by running the online worship meeting on Sunday mornings. 
Morgan also enjoys sports, camping, and farming. She has three siblings, Cody, Johnathan, and Naomi, and loves her golden retrievers, Copper, Bella, and Honey.

Meet Johnathan Dean

James "Johnathan" Dean is the son of Josh and Julie Davis of Elkins, and James and Flisha Dean of East Dailey. He is Morgan Davis’s stepbrother.
Johnathan, who prefers to be called by his middle name, is a rising freshman at Elkins High School. He is a member of the Lucky Leaf Livestock 4-H Club and is active at Otterbein United Methodist Church, where he serves (with his sister) by running online worship and helps train others in worship technology. 
Johnathan is very interested in computer programming and coding and plans to pursue computer programming as a future career. He enjoys playing acoustic guitar during Pickin' in the Park sessions at the Elkins City Park, where he joins his guitar teacher and mentor, Joe Shue, in jamming with other local musicians. 
Johnathan enjoys running, farming, camping, hunting, and fishing, along with playing his guitar. He has three siblings, Cody, Morgan, and Naomi, and also loves dogs, especially Honey, his family's golden retriever.  

Meet Cole Snyder

"My name is Cole Morgan Snyder. The Morgan comes from the first permanent American pioneer named Colonel Morgan Morgan. I think it is interesting that I am named after a man who is thought to have founded the first permanent settlement in West Virginia at Cool Spring Farm. My paternal grandparents and great-grandparents are all native West Virginians.
I am 15 and a sophomore attending Greenbrier East High School. I take honors classes in US Studies and English. Next year, my junior year, I will take AP classes in English and US History with honors classes in Algebra II and a dual credit class in Accounting II. My high school GPA is above 3.9. This year has been difficult because of Covid, and I eventually concluded it was in my best interest to use remote learning at home because of our low instruction/attendance rate. I am an only child with older parents so the time at home has been nice. My school is 35 minutes from our house, one way. None of us miss the time on the road back and forth or the bus.
I have attended Camp Lincoln once, 4H for 4 years, and last year YLA Teen Entrepreneurship Camp and then the YLA Youth Leadership Camp. My parents have always paid full price for me to attend. This year is different. I chose only one this year, and I greatly enjoyed my experience at Horseshoe last year. My Dad lost his job before Covid in June of 2018 and my Mom lost her job in May of 2018. My parents refused to draw any unemployment because of pride and because my Dad had a military retirement from 20 years in the military, they decided to start their own Drone company. My Dad's Drone company "Scenic 40 Aerospace" is just getting started which Covid hasn't helped. I thought about not attending any camps this year because I really wanted a yearbook, but my Mom said we would work this out.
I guess that is where, hopefully, you come in.  Thank you so much for giving me the opportunity to apply for a scholarship.  I promise to have a great time at camp and know I will learn things there. I cannot express my gratitude enough.

Members, please leave a comment, so we know you've visited us! If you are a Rotarian using this program as your make-up meeting and would like to contribute the cost of your normal Rotary meeting meal, we would be grateful. These funds go directly to our service projects. You can make a contribution through the Give/Donate link on the homepage. 
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