For the second module “Finding My Voice”, students travelled five hours by bus to the Canaveral National Seashore in Florida. There, they were greeted by North Carolina Outward Bound instructors and began their adventure.
The first lesson was about water safety and the basics of canoeing. Students learned about personal flotation devices and the safe way to wear them. Then, instructors explained the different parts of a canoe and a paddle and demonstrated gunwhale walking and various paddle strokes. Guided by the instructors, students loaded the boats, reviewed paddle strokes and signals and headed to camp. At camp, students set up tents, cooked, and discussed their expectations for the module. During the next four days, students took down camp in the morning, prepared meals, participated in group challenges, and navigated to new camp sites.
Participants began to formulate their own social initiatives while learning important communication skills regarding their interests and listening empathetically to the interests of the other Agents of Change. The Agents of Change took part in several activities aimed at developing communication tools based on empathy and active listening.
The module was designed to provide tools for dialogue and communication. Instructors encouraged students to find their purpose and align it with existing needs in their surroundings. The “Life Stories in the Sand” activity was a perfect opportunity for students to share their personal story. This narrative of past events served for students to find their voice and how to link it back to their community.
On the last day, students used the newly learned tools to navigate back to base camp. This coastal canoeing experience extended into the night and the Agents of Change were rewarded by bioluminescent seas that light with every stroke of their paddles. At 2:00 am, the group ran 3 miles to reach its final destination.
The module gratified the efforts of the students with spectacular wildlife sightings and moonrises. Daily dolphins and birds sightings, including a roseate spoonbill, made the experience unique. The Agents of Change learned from each other, worked as a group, and grew as human beings.