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Volunteer Spotlight: Lisa

Posted on May 13, 2021

For the kids who spend time at FortWhyte Alive’s Spring Day Camp, it’s a break from the routines of school and a chance to explore spending time outside being curious.

For Lisa, one of FortWhyte Alive’s youngest volunteers, Spring Day Camp is an opportunity to learn about working with children, nature training, and volunteer professionalism.

This year’s Spring Camp looked a lot different. With a smaller group, Lisa was one of only two volunteer camp counsellors. With a smaller group, it’s allowed them to really connect with campers and provide them with some really exciting experiences.

“I've never been a very outdoorsy person, but just being in nature boosts your happiness and I’m so grateful that I had the opportunity to volunteer at a nature camp for that reason.”

- Lisa Slater

Campers running across a field of green summer grass.

We connected with Lisa to see why she volunteers at FortWhyte Alive:

How long have you been volunteering at FortWhyte Alive?
I was a camper from kindergarten to grade eight, and then became a camp counsellor for the last 3 years.

What interested you in becoming a Spring Break camp volunteer counsellor?
Attending all those years as a camper, and all the great and exciting activities Fort Whyte brings to the table. And I love working with kids and socializing.

What kinds of things do you do as a Spring Break camp volunteer counsellor?
Plan activities, engage kids to try new things, get their steps up and meet other people my age.

What is your favourite memory volunteering at FortWhyte Alive?
During my second year volunteering, there was a little boy who was having a really hard time and was always crying. So with a little positive attitude from me, the camper became comfortable enough to engage in the games and he even made a new friend! It was a great memory for me as I felt like I made an impact on this camper and made his camp experience memorable. Also, the end of camp windups gives you a chance as volunteers to find your comfort levels and just be with people who can relate to you.

What have you learned or how have you grown as a person volunteering?
Throughout my volunteer experience, I realized how much nature affects your health and happiness. Before I was never an outdoorsy kind of person, but just being in nature can boost your happiness and I’m so grateful that I had the opportunity to volunteer at a nature camp.

What would you say to someone who is thinking about volunteering at FortWhyte Alive?
Don’t think of it as work, think of it as an opportunity to meet new people especially during the pandemic. Volunteering is also the best way to find future jobs as it shows good leadership and volunteering at FortWhyte will be an amazing reference. You may even find out that volunteering here means your part of the FortWhyte family and that’s the best thing about FortWhyte Alive, finding where you belong.

Thank you, Lisa!

From all of us, thank you for your commitment to FortWhyte and the contributions you’ve made in helping others connect with nature.

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Volunteers are the lifeblood of FortWhyte Alive. They come from all walks of life. From retired professionals looking for something different to students looking to gain experience, what they have in common is a desire to make a sustainable impact.

Head to fortwhyte.org/summer-camp-counsellor to learn more and apply to be a Summer Camp Counsellor.