Each summer the kids at the West 1 Community Schools Team Healthy Eaters and Leaders camp donate proceeds from their farmers market to a local charity. Over the course of this summer they sold the produce that they planted, grew, and harvested themselves, held raffles, sold hot lunches and raised $575 for emergent needs at BC Children's Hospital (BCCH).
Camp leaders were invited to the Child and Family Research Institute at BCCH to present the cheque.
"HEAL camp has been an amazing experience," said Alina Wong, a grade 12 Churchill student and HEAL camp leader. "The kids learn a lot about health and nutrition and about food in general. But as a camp leader I learned just as much. It helped my leadership skills in stressful situations."
Wong was among ten other youth leaders hired for full time work as Healthy Eaters and Leaders camp counsellors. HEAL camps also engage about six students as youth volunteers for week-long placements.
Lilian Wennersbusch, another Grade 12 Churchill student and HEAL camp leader added that it was the best summer of her life.
"It taught me a lot about patience and how to be a better teacher. I was one of the youngest camp leaders, and I learned a lot about empathy and how to better deal with kids as individuals," said Wennersbusch. "And I had a lot of fun."