A few weeks ago we had our April Back2Back Activity Days.Firstly, a big thank you to all the volunteers who made the experience so fun for all those involved. Another HUGE thank you has to go to St Paul's College for the use of their facilities. It couldn't have happened without their support!
Here's some of the feedback we received from one of the participant's parents.
"My son thoroughly enjoyed it and I'm not sure how they do it but he has come away again with such a boost to his self-esteem and confidence. He struggles in those areas and it was lovely to see him smiling from ear to ear.
He has 'begged' me to find out if he is able to attend their July camp. As he came out of the door when I picked him up, he said 'Mum did you see how they all came to say goodbye to me? I think they like me, mum.' The staff/volunteers made him feel so special."
Last month we had two very successful Amazon Adventure summer camps. During the week of the Older Kids camp we were delighted to have a visit from one of our board members Filip Puccini. Here is his reflection of what he experienced:
“At the camp, I witnessed youthful enthusiasm, uninhibited fun, noise, and laughter. A united group in their experience...The camp experience makes you realise that youth is a special time, and childhood maybe more important. One’s childhood shapes them for many years to come. The impact of our volunteering helps us to make an impact on someone’s life that may last many years. In fact, the benefit (to the children and us) may not be realised within ourselves for years to come...A leader’s time in ERC is a chance to be surrounded by quality people, and to make lasting friendships. It is a time to give time to something for the greater good and to enjoy yourself along the way.”
Amongst our SA leaders on the Younger Kids camp we were also greeted with a visit from Isaiah from Tasmania.
"With open hands, and I felt at home with this bunch of Eddie Ricers. The week was just incredible, and I learnt so much from both the other inspiring leaders and the amazing kids that I spent time with. Of course the magic of Eddie Rice surrounded all the volunteers and participants throughout the week.
Being in a different state, there were differences in the camp experience in South Australia to Tasmania, and it was very interesting to see all these throughout the week. One specific activity that I enjoyed that I hadn’t done before was candle sharing, where all of the camp come together in a nice reflective space and pass a candle around. It was just incredibly beautiful to see that all our hard work was making a difference. Although there differences in the camp experience, it was easy to see that all Eddie Ricers, no matter where they are from, were there for the same reason; to make the world a better place.
I truly am very grateful to have had this experience I have gained so much from this opportunity and feel as through I’ve grown as a leader because of it. I definitely hope to go back sometime soon and see all the familiar faces, and also to do even more camps abroad."
Thank you to everyone who contributed to the success of both camps!
Last month we had another successful Family Camp! Here's what one of the families who attended had to say:
"I can't remember the last time I felt so relaxed and reassured that my kids where in safe hands. Yes, they do go to camps with Edmund Rice, and I have the opportunity to have a break, but it is always on my mind, the kids and if they are safe. This gave me the opportunity to be as close as possible but able to be freed of the responsibility and it gave me an optimum level of relax and peace that I cannot get when they go alone. I really hope that you are able to run any more camps like this, it's perfect for parents who are nervous about leaving their children in others care, particularly immigrants and those who have experienced trauma and post-traumatic stress, such as myself. I hope that we may qualify to attend again, we get very little fun holidays, money is a big problem, and I haven't got family support so even if I could afford a holiday, it would be difficult for me to manage, enjoy, without support. I am so grateful, every single person who facilitated the camp was beyond delightful, how is it possible that so many young people could be so extraordinary in one space, designed to serve my family? I feel so blessed xxx"
Our volunteers also had an amazing experience.
"Love, trust and care is what it means to be family. Each participant and leader felt safe and supported to be the their true self; which made us feel as if we were part of one big Edmund Rice family. The guardians were given the opportunity to finally step back and focus on themselves for the one weekend, while they knew their children were in safe hands. Being able to bond with each other, and finding out they share common struggles and triumphs was a truly unique experience that they’ll probably never forget. Each individual on camp should be proud of the person they are and the impact they’ve had on each other’s lives."
"Wow! What an experience. Family Camps have a unique tendency to capture the both the hearts and minds of everyone involved, and this one was no exception. The superb administration provided by the PC’s and CC’s on this most recent camp created the ideal setting for personal growth and enjoyment. Loved it!"
Thank you to everyone who helped make the weekend so special!
Our two Summer Camps are done and dusted! Here's a video of some of the amazing times we had on our 'Tropical Summer' Camp, and our 'Around the World' Camp.
Our July Younger Kids Camp was a magical experience for all involved! The Harry Potter theme was embraced by everyone and provided for some unforgettable experiences. There were games of quidditch and potions classes, as well as spell training which resulted in all the kids running around the oval after dinner one night with sparklers lit up as wands.
For more pictures from the week click here!
Superhero Camp was a jam packed camp! Here's just a glimpse into what we did:
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