Summer in the City is a two week long summer camp offered for free to vulnerable kids living in Calgary. This year we will have a mix of at-home activities like arts & crafts online, along with COVID-19 safe field trips to Calgary landmarks (restrictions allowing). While on its surface it seems that this is a camp dedicated to providing fun activities for children who might not otherwise get to experience them, Summer in the City was also designed with a deeper purpose.
For children like Mateo*, Summer in the City is a chance to feel like a normal care-free kid. He will be able to escape the feeling of being “othered” and join a community of peers who have similar life experiences as he has had. He will try out new experiences while feeling safe and supported and his mental health will be nurtured. For his parents, the snacks and lunches offered at camp will remove a small financial burden and getting a break from a hyper 10 year old who has been stuck inside due to lockdown restrictions will be a welcomed respite.
When Mateo participates in Summer in the City, we also get to meet his family. We get to know what is going on in their lives and see if there are any other ways we can help. After Summer in the City is over, we can connect with the family and offer other services. We can help children like Mateo participate in other mental health programs, so he feels connected and part of a community that cares about him.
If Summer in the City inspires you as much as us, please join us in supporting youth mental health this summer. All your donations will be matched up to 50% by Shaw Birdies for Kids presented by Altalink.