May 20, 2014 - 2:44 PM
For one boy, Silver Lake Camp was more than a place to meet new friends; it was a place to escape from his reality for a while—somewhere he felt welcome, accepted and safe.
Silver Lake Camp, operated by the YMCA of Okanagan, provided this child a nurturing environment where he could grow and thrive. Hundreds of kids, from all backgrounds and abilities, realize their dreams at camp each year, and counselors of the children’s Super Nova program at the Kelowna’s Women’s Shelter are especially grateful.
“The kids who come through our program are often exposed to high levels of stress in their home lives and as a result of this, they may not have the chance to play and be in a supportive setting that allows them to relax and enjoy themselves,” says Sharon Hulston, Super Nova counselor—a program for children who have either witnessed or experienced family abuse and conflict.
At Silver Lake Camp, kids are free to be kids. They learn valuable life and leadership skills that strengthen their confidence and build character.
“One of the biggest benefits we see from kids coming back from Silver Lake, is an increase in self-esteem,” says Zoe Borzovoy, Super Nova counselor. “The staff and leaders do a great job and really have a heart for working with children. The kids rave about all that they get to do—archery, canoeing, swimming, high & low ropes, camp games—we hear about it for months afterwards.”
On top of this, kids are exposed to positive role models at Silver Lake Camp, and get to learn life skills in a fun, natural environment.
“For a lot of these kids, this is the highlight of their year,” says Sharon. “They wouldn’t usually get experiences like this; if not for the financial support of the YMCA, these kids couldn’t go to camp.
Silver Lake Camp offers overnight and leadership programs for children and teens ages 6-17 years old. In 2013, YMCA day and overnight camps welcomed 1784 kids locally, 201 of which were sponsored to attend Y summer camps.
For more information or to register, visit ymcaokanagan.ca or call 250-491-9622.
News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2014