Date:   May 5, 2015

Victoria, BC – Youth for Change and Inclusion (YCI) 2015 will bring together 80 highschool and middle school students, 11 teachers and 9 police officers on the shores of Shawnigan lake for four days of life-changing focus on building healthy communities. The camp takes place May 6th through 9th.

Speakers including Holocaust survivor Peter Gary, Order of Canada awardee Judy Tethong, Residential Schools survivors Joyce and Victor Underwood, along with Chief Elsner, S/Sgt. Darren Laur and Calgary Police Service’s Tad Milmine will introduce youth to issues of poverty, racism, anti-semitism, hate, bullying, sexism, homophobia and more. YCI isn’t just about raising youth awareness – the camp is designed to build resilience within each participant and empower youth to make positive changes.

“YCI camp was an amazing experience for me,” previous youth participant Zachary said. “It taught me so many amazing and important things about the world we live in. YCI showed me that one person can make a big difference in our world.”

The first YCI camp was run in 2003 with the financial support of Canadian Heritage and Coast Capital Savings. Subsequent camps have been run with the financial support of the Victoria Police Department, Coast Capital Savings and Victoria School District 61. Many of the schools have paid for partial teacher release costs and the police departments have supported YCI by allowing their employees to attend on work time. Many volunteers have attended on their own time. The event takes place at Camp Pringle.

This year’s YCI camp will see participants sharing their experiences live through Facebook, Twitter and Instragram via the #YCI2015 tag.  Additionally, YCI participants, including VicPD members and youth will be blogging about their experiences at the camp. You can read the first post, by Cst. Allison Johnson, on why she volunteers her time at YCI, here: