More than 200 students from south Trinidad showed up at Paria Suites, La Romaine on Saturday 27th October, to participate in the much talked about Uniquely Worthy Motivational Workshop.
The workshop, one of three, was hosted by United Way Trinidad and Tobago and bpTT.
On the day, the students from a total of 30 schools were told by facilitator, inspirational speaker and author, Don La Foucade: “You are uniquely worthy, despite what anyone says to you, you are not a mistake and you are put here for a divine purpose. You can’t spell quality, without ‘u’, you can’t spell value without ‘u’. No one will value you unless you value yourself.”
Students, some teary eyed, were all engrossed as La Foucade spoke, hanging on to his every word. They were asked to say some things teachers and adults would tell them that usually make them feel embarrassed or ridiculed. “You are stupid, you are good for nothing!” and “I wish you would just disappear!” were just some of the statements made. “You are all uniquely worthy” La Foucade repeated “and if anyone says anything negative about you or to you, just smile and know to yourself that you are uniquely worthy. Usually when people say negative things about you it is because they see a quality in you they wish they possessed.”
The students were given the opportunity throughout the day to share their thoughts and this too made them feel uniquely worthy. The comments made by the students (all between the ages of 14 and 17) were amazing. One student was overheard saying “Today we are princes and princesses.”
Special prizes, pens, and chocolates were distributed to those answering questions and to anyone who made an attempt to venture out of ‘the shy zone’.
What encouraged students the most to work with each other at the workshop was the table project. They were asked to design a project that could be implemented at schools to spread the message that the Uniquely Worthy workshop carries - Valuing One’s Self, Valuing One’s Peers and Discovering and Living One’s Purpose. The students were quite creative and artistic and it was truly wonderful to see students who never met one another before, work together in groups. The atmosphere of the workshop was truly one of togetherness.
After a sumptuous lunch and dessert, a quartet of students mostly from Pleasantville Secondary did their rendition of the Jesse J’s song ‘Price tag’… such lovely young people, such lovely voices. The audience lapped up the performance and didn’t hesitate to applaud accordingly.
Top organisational consultant, Mr. L. Anthony Watkins then addressed the participants on finding and living one’s purpose. He asked students to stand and state what they would like to be in the future and why. The answers given and the way Mr. Watkins led the students to truly find their purpose was incredible. It was obvious that they knew what they wanted to be but what was the purpose? They all left the workshop feeling satisfied, confident and inspired.
One student of San Fernando Central Secondary told gieMAGAZINE “I truly enjoyed the workshop. I came here thinking this would be quite boring and it was taking away from my Saturday, but I am so happy I came today. I really feel like I’m worth something and I’m happy about being me. I am Uniquely Worthy.”
A teacher who attended the event thanked La Foucade and his team for their effort. The teacher said, “I am truly inspired to see that there are still people who care about the youths of today. I have no regrets in bringing the students here. This workshop has not only inspired the students but I myself feel inspired.”
At the end of the day, the students were asked to complete evaluation forms on what they learnt through the day and where they are heading. The Tobago workshop was also held last Friday at Rovanel’s Resort. This workshop was also a huge success. One more workshop is carded for November 9th at Cascadia Hotel.
Many thanks to United Way Trinidad and Tobago and to bpTT for making the uniquely worthy workshop experience a reality. This workshop definitely continues to inspire so many of our nation’s youth. Many more than those who attended stand to benefit!
Photos highlights courtesy Benchmark Communications Ltd.