StrutCamp - A Mother's Perspective
Sep 26, 2017
StrutCamp is designed to empower young women. To provide them with tools that will enable them to walk with confidence and pride in their daily lives. But the ripples of change don’t stop there.
Once the important young women in your life have the freedom to grow into their true selves, the result could be transformational change for the whole family. We spoke with Amanda CEO of Made for Life Organics and founder of the Made for Life Foundation about her experience as the mother of two young ladies that attended StrutCamp to find out more.
Amanda met Jamie Edwards, founder of StrutCamp, through a leadership training seminar that she attended. She found him to be inspiring, and when she heard about StrutCamp she knew that it would be useful for her daughters, Hannah, then 16 and Molly, who was 14.
Why Did You Take Your Daughters To StrutCamp?
There were a mixture of reasons for wanting my daughters to attend StrutCamp. But most pressingly, we had just been through a tricky and painful divorce. Even the most amicable divorce can cause collateral damage for children.
They often wonder what part they played in the breakdown of the marriage. I knew that StrutCamp could help them see that they were never at fault.
My daughters had experienced a huge change in their reality, from a very affluent and stable lifestyle to something very different.
Aside from that, I wanted to help them to grow in confidence. There is just so much pressure on teenage girls to be so many things. I felt that what Jamie offers, works with adults, and youngsters are just adults in progress.
I wanted to offer them a way to move forward. To give them some tools in the emotional toolbox. I wanted to encourage them to don the pants of power!
Did The Girls Resist Going To StrutCamp?
At first they didn’t want to go at all. My oldest daughter was particularly resistant. She was in a challenging headspace at the time.
She and I were going through some very difficult challenges in our relationship and that made it hard for her to take my advice. I encouraged her to give it a try, to go in with an open mind. We made it into a girl’s trip.
However, it wasn’t a weekend of easy, fluffy and light fun. StrutCamp was transitional and transformational for our family unit. It sparked some very open and honest conversations.
Great change is never easy. The transition that happened for me and my girls was tough in all honesty. But it was also necessary and it changed my relationship with them.
What Did StrutCamp Teach You As A Parent?
I decided to give them space during the event, after all, even 14 years-olds should be treated as independent young adults. I waited for the event to start and then left. I connected with another parent, who had brought his daughter along. It was extremely helpful for both of us to share what we were going through, in terms of challenges with our daughters.
StrutCamp taught me, that as a parent we are required to walk beside our daughters as they journey into adulthood. As they grow, so we grow. We parents are still learning in some way; We are transitioning alongside them.
My own parenting skills were based on the way that I was parented. Life modelling has been passed down from generation to generation. But the world is changing. That kind of flawed modelling isn’t okay anymore.
I had a tendency to wrap my daughters up and protect them from everything. StrutCamp is actually about empowering them and empowering the parent to let them experience the world.
I would advise parents that they have to be prepared to understand and accept that StrutCamp is about giving your child confidence. Helping them to transition from child to adult. You can’t continue to treat your young adult as a child, without experiencing issues.
How Did StrutCamp Impact Your Daughters?
My youngest daughter bounced out of StrutCamp. She absolutely loved it from start to finish. Two years on, the foundations she learned at the event are still embedded in the way she behaves. She is way ahead of many of her peers in terms of her approach. She is considered and confident. She doesn’t feel the need to fit in. She is very proud to be different. I consider her to be a fiercely independent amazing young woman now.
My oldest daughter was the one that felt strong resistance to StrutCamp initially. She found some aspects of the event outstanding and didn’t enjoy other aspects at all. Yet, now she has blossomed from a troubled teenager into a very confident young woman. I feel that StrutCamp laid the foundations within her to enable this transition. She has now decided to take some time out before she starts university to consider her options - and is fully prepared to take on the world.
Both of my daughters understand that they don’t have to fulfill what we parents believe will be good for them. They can decide to take the path that feels right for them.
The Bottom Line
StrutCamp potentially means that your youngster will become their own person and follow their own path. As a parent, we need to accept that and support their own journey.
My personal experience is that it has been great for my daughters. True, there was initial resistance, but StrutCamp just works, especially with a parent on the path alongside them.
What Jamie does, and what happens as a result of StrutCamp changes lives. It changes everybody’s life within the family unit.
StrutCamp provided us with a 360-degree view of our family dynamics. It was not about just fixing my daughters’ problems. After all, their problems have come from us lot anyway!
Jamie gave my daughters the tools to step confidently into adulthood, but beyond that, StrutCamp caused a transformational change for our family. I would recommend it to anyone with important young women in their lives.