The following was written by Elayna, to explain exactly why she wants to go to Explo so much, and why she'll be working to raise donations over the next couple of weeks:
Hi, everyone! My name is Elayna, and Explo Summer Program is very important to me. In the past, I’ve done things as beginner courses that later turned out to be things I really loved to do. For example, I learned that things I never thought I’d like or be good at -- like hip-hop dance, latin dance, cooking with mysteriously vague recipes, and songwriting -- I actually was
good at (I also learned about some things, like karate and playing guitar, that I was not so good at).
This year, I’m trying out some more new things I’ve never really studied much before, more academic than the others; Criminal Psychology is the one that stands out the most. I’ve been interested in the human brain for as long as I can remember, and I’ve been wondering what goes on inside the heads of “bad people” since about that long as well. And, provided we work up the money to send me there, I may actually find out! Sure, I could probably ask some people that know about it… but I want to study it for myself, so I can understand it better, rather than a few people sitting me down and just saying what they know. I’m also excited about the other course: Mythology. I’ve been into myths since I was in elementary school, but I’ve never had the chance to study as much as I’d like to. Until now, anyway.
It’s also an amazing social environment. I automatically feel safe with the people I meet there, even if I don’t know anything about them. At school, when I meet brand-new people, I’m nervous, cautious, and paranoid. But at Explo, I feel more secure with people. When I see people for the first time, I actually feel brave enough to walk up and start a conversation without worrying about the usual things I worry about. At school, when I discovered that I liked girls, I was scared of each and every person, worrying constantly about that secret. But within three days of being at Explo, I told someone. And they took it so calmly! It was as if I had told them my favorite color or something. It doesn’t seem like a big deal now, but it sure did then. Also, I used to have a bit of stage fright when it came to singing. But after singing in front of a group of people from Explo, I never get nervous about it anymore. I just think about what happened there: people smiling, waiting excitedly to hear what I was about to sing, ready to listen to each word, each note… and then, outside of Explo, I just pretend that whatever “audience” I have is them!
It took quite a bit of writing, making, thinking, and explaining to get the money the past two years, and I’m ready to do just as much of that this year… perhaps more ready than the past two years. I’m more excited than I was before about Explo! I’ll get to meet even more new friends, reunite with the ones I made the past two years, study things I’m really eager to learn about, and go away from home for longer than a week: for the first time ever! I’ve never been to overnight camp before… I was always a day student the past two years. I’ve been away from my parents
before, but I was always with my grandparents, or a friend’s house, or some other relative… it’s not the same as studying and eating and sleeping all at the same place, with someone I’m only just meeting when I get there. I’m honestly really excited to experience that.
So, there’s my reason for wanting to go so badly! If you guys can help me get there, that would be amazing
and awesome. Thank you!