What is OLT?
The Oceania Leadership Team (OLT) is a volunteer organisation that brings youth from all over the world to Australia. OLT is designed to develop strong moral values and personal integrity in its members and give them the skills to succeed, both within the program, and in their lives after OLT. The program gives its volunteers the opportunity to promote the value of education and a culture of service to the island nations of the Oceania region.
What exactly does OLT do?
While young people have the opportunity to develop their minds in institutes of higher learning, we feel their education is incomplete without the development of their hearts. Emotion and will are just as much a part of us as intelligence is, and all three must be developed to become rounded individuals and contributing members of society. Thus, one of the key objectives of the OLT program is to train members through its extensive character education program.
What better way can there be to develop your heart than through a life of service to others? Over the course of 10 months, OLT participants take part in a variety of community service projects throughout Australia, New Zealand and the Pacific Islands. These can vary greatly depending on the specific skills the members have to offer and the needs of a particular community, considering as well the impact and sustainability of the projects.
As OLT is a self-sustaining program, the volunteers spend a significant amount of time fundraising for the program. Fundraising in itself can be a challenging and strengthening experience for volunteers. It requires them to step out of their comfort zones, but also gives them the opportunity to encounter new people, often with very different ways of thinking, and helps break down personal preconceptions and stereotypes people have of one another.
All the activities and education the OLT participants pursue throughout their journey are designed to build up their confidence and nurture a sense of ownership and initiative. The program includes regular seminars that cover various areas of faith, character and leadership training. Ultimately, the aim is to have participants develop valuable leadership skills on the program so that they can become leaders in their society once they return home.