These are just a few of the reactions that Volvo received from the participants of the first Voice of Leadership (VOL) Camp held at the Eugenio Lopez Center in Antipolo, Rizal. A corporate advocacy of Viking Cars, Incorporated (VCI), the official authorized dealer and distributor of Volvo cars in the Philippines, the two-day camp aimed to further equip the 30 representatives sent by the 12 participating schools.

Along with their respective school chaperones, the group of high school seniors was exposed to several activities that were aimed to develop not only their speech writing and elocution skills but also kindle in them the spark of true leadership. With activities ranging from personality tests, pottery, games and group discussions, these brilliant crop of young individuals displayed amazing personal and interpersonal skills that proves they are indeed, worthy to be part of the first batch of VOL.

With the officers of VCI and the main proponents of VOL Miss Selene L. Yu, President of Scandinavian Motors Corporation (SMC), the official importer of Volvo cars in the country and Atty. Albert B. Arcilla, President and Chief Executive Officer of VCI resource speakers and facilitators were also invited to share their knowledge. Among them was Mr. Edrik Calma who conducted a speech-writing seminar, Mr. Roy Agustin who helped them with Speech Delivery, and the VOL Spokesperson Mr. Chris Tiu who shared with the youngsters his views and experiences about leadership. World-renowned ceramic artists, Mr. and Mrs. John and Tessy Pettyjohn also showed the kids how to make pottery and helping them see the similarity between molding clay and molding characters.
The camp was made even livelier with Mr. Rafael Pacheco, Jr., who conducted team-building activities that infused more verve to the already vibrant atmosphere of the camp. With seemingly boundless energy, the campers were treated to a relaxing evening just chilling out at the bonfire with up and coming acoustic siren Julianne crooning in the background.

Day two of the camp gave the teens an avenue to showcase their public speaking skills when they faced a panel of judges where they were to deliver the speeches they wrote earlier in the day. Among the guests judges were veteran theatre artist Mr. Bart Guingona, esteemed PR practitioner Miss Henrietta Bolinao and ad specialist Mr. Arby Andaya. They were invited to basically give tips and tricks to the participants and coach them on how to improve their elocution skills.

"I was amazed and exceedingly pleased with the participants. They are all very well-rounded individuals whom I think are very promising. I came here thinking we are going to teach them but now we, the organizers, are also going home with learnings from these impressive young group. I hope that they will nourish the qualities of a true leader and come to be fine leaders of our society," quips Atty. Arcilla.

The camp is part of a series of activities within the VOL program. From its launch in late 2008, VOL has continually touched base with the participants through orientation activities, websites and other forms of communication that aims to help them in their preparations for the Grand Finals to be held on February 11, 2009 at the Carlos P. Romulo Auditorium, RCBC Plaza, Makati City.

After their respective intra-school competitions, the 12 final candidates shall vie for the top three spots and bring home the prize and honor of being a vessel of change through VOL. The national winners will be awarded a Voice of Leadership trophy and a cash prize worth P50,000 for the grand champion, P40,000 for the first runner up and P30,000 for the second runner up. Their respective schools will also receive the same amount in support of programs that will help propagate leadership among the faculty and staff.

The Voice of Leadership advocates the development of youth leaders who shall embody the character of true leadership that with both integrity of heart and excellent skills, anchored in God-centeredness and exemplified by accountable and responsible stewardship. Through an elocution competition, VOL aspires to develop youth leaders who shall articulate the voice of leadership among their fellow youth that would move and inspire, innovate and instigate leadership transformation.