From October 23 to 28, 2016 Breakfast Club of Canada hosted their third Ontario Leadership Camp at YLCC (Youth Leadership Camp Canada) in Orillia. This year’s theme was DREAM, BELIEVE, TAKE ACTION. Attending the leadership opportunity was a dream come true for Brighton Petch and Julia Banting, grade six students from Tom Thompson Public School. As a Halton Food for Thought partner school that receives funding from Breakfast Club of Canada, Tom Thompson PS was given the opportunity to nominate 2 students.
For six days, 34 young leaders from all across Ontario, nominated by their school and chosen by camp organizers, were provided an opportunity to discover new interests through cooperation, games, sports, theatre, team building and cultural activities. The Breakfast Club of Canada Leadership Camp is one way the organization empowers young leaders to create positive change in their communities. They accomplish this through the provision of:
- A leadership program with a focus on the strengths of each participant
- A place where young people can discover new areas of interest
- A place that encourages positive social behaviour
- An opportunity to create a generation of young leaders socially engaged
- A positive and dynamic team of facilitators
Tom Thompson Principal, Randy Morassut identified that “Julia and Brighton were identified and subsequently nominated as a result of input from their teachers and peers. These two youth already demonstrate leadership skills, both are kind, respectful, outgoing, well liked and respected classmates who would not only benefit personally from the experience but also act as a positive influence within their school community as a result of the development opportunity”.
When asked what was their favourite part of the experience, Brighton said “the activities which required teamwork and were always encouraging” while Julia noted “that all the leaders where very nice and fun, had lots of energy and could be easily trusted”! Julia said her main takeaway was “to not be ashamed of yourself and be confident” while Brighton says she learned “the importance of incorporating everyone’s ideas, being responsible and helping to build someone up if they are down”.
Julia and Brighton’s take on being a good leader based on their recent experience includes being yourself, inclusion and offering what you can to help others. According to my short interview with these two young ladies from Burlington – both role model the Breakfast Club of Canada interwoven theme of DREAM, BELIEVE and TAKE ACTION! Who knows what they will accomplish next!