It wasn’t all fun and games for the youth who attended FSY in Samoa last week.
For some, it was a “life-changing experience”.
“If you didn’t come to FSY, you missed out,” George Paramore, 17, said.
“We learned so much and my testimony has grown.”
More than 600 youth from around Upolu took part in dancing, sports, building activities, as well as learning the importance of personal scripture study.
The FSY program is a worldwide initiative that targets youth between the ages of 14-17.
first time. And for many, it exceeded expectations.
“I thought it easy going to be boring but now I feel so happy,” Summer Brown, 15, said.
“I'm going to miss FSY and the people so much.”
Elder Meliula M. Fata, an Area Seventy of the Church, said people experience a “spiritual change” at FSY.
“The young people learn from each other and many life-long friendships are made.
“However, we need parents to support this, I know it’s hard for kids to leave home, but I tell you, it’s worth it,” he said.
The FSY conference is made up of a team of volunteers.
Coordinator Yezenia Tea encourages YSA to help out as counselors for the next FSY.
“YSA need to be invested in FSY,” she said.
“It really helps train us to become better leaders. FSY is for the youth but it’ll help keep us YSA on track.”
These YSA volunteers take time out of holidays, work and school to look after groups of 10-12 youth, 24 hours a day.
“The best thing about FSY is the unity and getting to know all the kids,” Vave Patea, 22, said.
“If any YSA want to know if they should support FSY as a counselor I would tell them to just go and do it.”
Mikaele Palemene, 24, enjoyed the spiritual aspect.
“I love teaching the kids how Heavenly Father answers prayers and how to study the scriptures and be obedient. It’ll be such a blessing on their missions.”
The FSY programme was introduced to Samoa in 2013.
Earlier this year, a similar FSY camp was held at the Vaiola College campus for the youth of Savaii.
See the video of the event here: https://www.facebook.com/LDSPacificArea/videos/1445049995563853/