“Really the point of Moorelands is you come to learn how to be a better leader and then you go back to your community and bring that leadership there.”Kelvin, VITAL participant age 16.
Moorelands Kids has been a huge part of Kelvin’s life since he was 8 years old. When we meet to discuss what he has learned over Zoom, he is proud to share each of the cabin photos he brought home from his eight years of Moorelands Camp.
One of the unexpected benefits of moving our programming online was that we were able to serve kids in our after-school programs who live outside of the neighbourhoods in which we normally operate. Thanks to this change, last year, Kelvin participated in our VITAL after-school program for the first time…
Kelvin tells us that Moorelands has taught him all about bringing leadership to his community. Here’s his story in his own words.
“This past year, what’s really made an impact (on me) is learning to hold yourself accountable for your actions and be responsible. VITAL has helped me become better at public speaking too. It has helped me become a lot more comfortable communicating on-camera.
The biggest thing though, was the community I gained. When the pandemic first happened, I felt really stuck. The summer before I started VITAL I was going into Grade 11 and it felt like such an important year, and then everything was just put on pause. I was worried how online school would affect my grades— I want to be able to go to University in a couple of years. It was also stressful being stuck at home in close quarters all the time, lots of tension builds up but you’ve got nowhere to go. I couldn’t go see my friends or anything.
So that was the best thing about online VITAL – it gave me something to look forward to every week. Because it was over the course of a whole year, rather than just the summertime, we got to build a better connection and create a community.
The volunteering part taught me a lot about responsibility and being a role model. We had to plan a Festive Friday online event for the younger kids and you realize that this is a big deal— this means a lot to them and it’s the only interaction a lot of them are getting outside of school. VITAL is almost a transition to post-secondary and life as an adult, because you learn the importance of your impact on others and how to be a role model.
To everyone who has made a donation to support my time at Moorelands, I would like to say thank you because it’s really just been a great experience. It’s taught me a lot of things and I hope you believe in this program as much as I do!”
Help us support kids like Kelvin beyond their camp experience and throughout the school year. Donate to our after-school programs today!