For many youth, summer camp is a time to kick back, have a good time and maybe make some new friends.
But for some youth, it is so much more.In 2012, Prospera Credit Union, which has a branch in Langley, made a decision to sponsor one young person between the ages of 14-18 from each of their 16 branches to attend YES Camp as a way to celebrate the International Year of Co-operatives.
The idea was to introduce the co-operative principles of leadership and working together to a new generation and inspire them to make the world a better place. The credit union never expected the program would have such significant impact on the youth involved.
â€œAt YES Camp I felt that I could truly be who I was meant to be,â€ says Jayme Reitsma from Abbotsford, who attended camp in 2013. â€œI stepped completely outside my comfort zone and into my courage zone. YES Camp, unlike many camps, isnâ€™t just there so you can have fun, it teaches you about yourself at the same time.â€
Young people attending YES Camp enjoy hiking, canoeing, kayaking and nightly campfires along with the chance to experience the power of teamwork, communication, co-operation and trust. Throughout the week, skills training is offered in the areas of self-awareness, co-operation, communication, global awareness, environmental sustainability and leadership. Most importantly, participants take part in the creation of a strong community of support, to promote respect for one another and encourage individual growth.
â€œYES Camp was an unforgettable experience that will most certainly influence my future in a positive wayâ€¦it changed my outlook on life for the better by increasing my self confidence and social interaction abilities.â€ says John Kamp, a Prospera member who attended camp in 2012.
With such positive results, the YES camp sponsorship has become an annual tradition for the credit union – which has branches in the Okanagan and Fraser Valley as well as Surrey and Vancouver – and Prospera needs your help to identify some awesome young people who would love to win a free trip to YES Camp this summer. To be eligible, each youth (or their parent/guardian) must have been a member of Prospera Credit Union for at least one year.
Once again this year there are four camp dates available for youth aged 14-16 and two camps for youth aged 16-18. All YES Camps take place at Cowichan Lake on Vancouver Island and transportation is included.
2014 Camp Dates
14-16 Years 16-18 Years
Roots A – July 6 – 12 Pathways A â€“ July 27 – August 2
Roots B – July 13 – 19 Pathways B â€“ August 3 – 9
Roots C – August 17 – 23
Roots D – August 24 – 30
The deadline for entries is May 31, 2014 and entry ballots are available at any branch of Prospera Credit Union.
For nearly 40 years, The YES (Youth Excellence Society) has been inspiring youth from across BC and providing them with a unique learning experience through an action-packed week of adventure, co-operative learning and leadership trainingâ€”delivered with the support of co-operatives and credit unions from across the province. The YES is a summer camp experience in BC that will last a lifetime.