I am what I have experienced. My experiences have been the biggest turning point in my life.
Starting with a simple discovery of a passion. I developed an unexplainable feeling of Importance.Joy.Commitment. Volunteering has enabled me to unfold an unknown skill along with a desire to pursue. Through volunteering I have come to the realization that working with youth is my greatest strength and my motivation for future success.
It was just summer fun. In summer of 2005, I was subsidized to go to Camp Jubilee. Camp became my ‘safe place’. I was freed from my mature responsibilities at home, and I was able to just be a kid. For once. After two years of being a camper, I was surprisingly invited back to join leadership the following year. I was ecstatic. With great feedback I graduated leadership, which was a two week program, to which I was still subsidized to go. I volunteered the next three weeks. During the three weeks, I gained a whole new sense of responsibility, one that positively affected others! I loved working with youth because I could really see the impact their camp experience had on them... just like it did on me. The next summer came, I volunteered for the entire summer. I was a P.A, which stands for Program Assistant. During this time I would assist cabin leaders, Instruct outdoor recreational activities, help in the kitchen, and even have my own cabin for two weeks! It seemed like a 24 hour job but well worth it, and rewarding! After summer of 2006, I was motivated. I had gained my standard first aid certificate, high ropes and repelling certificate, also I attended a camping conference that provided workshops around working with youth in a residential camp setting. Summer of 2007, I was hired as a Junior Cabin Leader! My hard work, commitment, and overall passion for my summer job were recognized by the entire camp, as I won the All Round Best Female Cabin Leader Award! Camp subsidizes about 60% of its campers who otherwise wouldn’t be able to afford to go. I have witnessed great transformations in our campers and it’s because of the Fun-loving, Caring, Non-judgemental atmosphere that we as cabin leaders, create. Camp Jubilee has a Partnership with Camp Eureka, a camp program for children and youth with invisible disabilities. I have had the Privilege to work with these amazing kids. I adapted to different behaviours and looked at a lot of situations in a ‘think outside the box’ way, still to this day it has helped me to be more successful when working with youth in general. I will be working with Eureka for the third year this summer, and can’t wait! Currently at camp I am working with a subsidized group of “high-risk” youth funded by the Foresters group. We have the same group of youth up for three weekends in total. Our goal is to utilize the leadership skills and independence these youth already have and direct it into positive ways, while gaining a sense of confidence and reasonable responsibility. Working at camp has opened up the doors to so many opportunities that would not have been there otherwise. As a camper I saw something different than I had ever seen before and now I have changed my whole life around. It was just summer fun that created my Passion. Forever.
Relationship is key. PoCoMo Youth Services Society’ Project Reach-Out is a program where we, as outreach workers, drive around the tri-cities in our neighbourhood friendly graphitized bus and connect with youth on the street. Our program focuses on meeting youth where they are, and building relationships with them. I started volunteering in 2007; initially we walked about engaging with youth around community centres and parks. Now we have TWO busses that go all around to all the “hot spots” in the tri-cities and hang out with youth. This has been one of the most amazing experiences; I have the Privilege of talking to youth, not as “high risk” youth, but as a friend. I have had the Privilege of truly knowing what triggers these youth, and what makes them happy. I have had the Privilege to help youth, which feel they have no one else to go to, trust somebody. I have had the Privilege to guide youth to do more positive things, and think positively. I have had the Privilege to make a difference in their lives. PoCoMo believes in harm reduction, for instance a youth who is high or intoxicated we STILL welcome them in while making sure the youth is safe. We follow the tendencies of our youth to better understand why they do what they do. I have worked with the most amazing kids; they have so much experience in life that nobody should ever have to deal with, and still they get up in the morning. The youth I work with have the biggest and best personalities. I believe that building trust and understanding someone is key to helping them. “Kids don’t care how much you know, until they know how much you care”
Camp and PoCoMo along with other volunteer jobs have been such great experiences, and have led me to continue learning in this field. September of 2010 I will be taking the Child and Youth Care Counselling Program at Douglas College, before I further reach my goal to join the RCMP.
Just recently I took an Introduction to Policing Course by the RCMP. I was interested in the opportunities and wanted a better look at what a career in the RCMP would be like. Wow. I am so grateful I took this course, we went through quite a few sections within the RCMP and had any questions possible answered. Taking this course motivated me more than ever to work towards it. Because I’m so young I have the opportunity to travel and get post-secondary education. In the meantime all I want to do is PUSH-UPS!
PoCoMo Video link -> http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gz6Ei7IzGUM
Guyana, meaning “Land of Many Waters”, remains one of the poorest countries in the Caribbean Commonwealth. Guyana is located north of South America.
While in Guyana our focus will be: Construction
HIV and Health Promotion Information Leadership and Life Skills Training
Our target groups will be:
Various community stakeholders including men, women and young people
Participating in the Guyana Project will increase my experience of working with young people and broaden my awareness of the issues in other places of the world. Not only will it broaden my awareness but all my supporters as well! I am more than excited to take part, and can't wait to meet the team too! I am what I have experienced. My experiences have been the biggest turning point in my life.
Starting with a simple discovery of a passion. I developed an unexplainable feeling of Importance.Joy.Commitment. Volunteering has enabled me to... (more)
This is a space for Malia to share inspiration, information, and opportunities for involvement with global impact.