Do you remember your favourite summer vacations, I certainly do.
Summer has always been my favourite season. I love skiing, and snowboarding, but even they can be accomplished in the summer with a quick trip to the Southern Hemisphere. I love how the sun doesn’t set until well after 9 pm and it starts getting light out at 4 am. I love that I could spend hours outdoors, even with my allergies at their worst.
I think I love the summer so much because I got two-three months off as a kid and that every spare second was filled with so many different varieties of camp – horseback riding, sailing, French, day and basketball camps were a yearly ritual that I looked forward to with a surprising amount of fervour for the better part of 8 years.
The weekends were spent at the cottage either our or a friend’s, and weeknights were frequently reserved for soccer practices and games.
I definitely didn’t realize how fortunate I was at the time, I just assumed that was how everyone spent their summers; the majority of my friends attended day and basketball camps with me.
I experienced so many firsts at camp:
- I scored my first 3-point shot in a basketball game in the summer of Grade 7
- I secured my first volunteer position at the camp in the summer of Grade 9
- I went fishing for the first and only time at day camp. Never mind that the experience traumatized me so much that I couldn’t eat fish for the better part of ten years unless it came from a can and there wasn’t any evidence of scales in sight
- I learned how to maintain a sailboat and properly hoist sails as well as proficiently paddle a canoe
- I made some of the best friends of my life
I’m one of those people that honestly believes that the youth today has it just as tough as we once had it, maybe we’ve forgotten how difficult it was to be a kid or a teen but they go through the exact same stresses that we do as adults.
There are two things that I believe: that everyone who wants to go to pursue higher education should be able to, and that the lack of funds should never be reason for someone to miss out on anything that has the potential to make them a better person.
If you’ve got the time (and I assure you, you do), check out the The Fresh Air Fund website and figure out how to donate, volunteer, and host a child for the summer.
This is your call to action – don’t be left out.