Summer Leaders Earn their Title!

Wow what an amazing summer! The YMAP Summer Leaders have set the bar high for next year’s group. The 17 participant’s planned three fundraisers and implemented them
at multiple YMCA branches. The youth group also completed a variety of
volunteer shifts out in the community over the summer months. It was a very
busy summer filled with fun, laughs, insight, impact, growth and memories
shared by all! Let’s take a look at some of the highlights…

Summer Leaders raised $945 with proceeds going to Calgary Red Cross/Flood Relief,
Calgary Drop in and Rehab Centre (along with 16 garbage bags full of clothing)
and The Action Coalition on Human Trafficking (ACT Alberta). The charities were
chosen based off of interest by the youth.

Besides fundraising, the other components to Summer Leaders were practicing
philanthropy and attending field trips. August was jammed packed with
volunteering and new learning experiences for the youth. This included
volunteering at the Drop in and Rehab Centre, Rotary Park Sports Day,
Afrikadey, Global Fest, Reggae Fest and touring the Meow Foundation.

Summer Leaders participated in a day trip at Camp Chief Hector where they learnt how
to spear-throw (atlatl), practice their aiming skills with archery, team build
through the challenge course and dangled on low ropes. It was a fun filled day
packed with lots of laughs and memories to remember, minus the insect bite I
received. Remember to wear long pants and bring your repellent!

The wrap up session was a chance for Summer Leaders to reflect on their time with the
program. What did they enjoy? What was challenging? And most importantly what
did the youth learn about themselves and others? This information will help the
youth figure out their next steps in life as they go onto post-secondary school
and mature.

As the coordinator for Summer Leaders I have seen how the words belong, grow, thrive and lead truly transform into action. The program allowed youth to be
themselves in a safe space and meet others who share similar interests. I have
witnessed friendships develop and blossom into long term commitments. The youth
were able to learn what philanthropy is, question why it is important and what
role it will pay in their lives. The Summer Leaders program instilled a sense of purpose and perspective in the youth for helping those who are in need throughout the community. I’m excited to see what’s in store for these youth and how Summer Leaders played a role in shaping the future leaders of tomorrow.