Summer camp for girls coming
Jodi-Ann Gilpin, Gleaner Writer
It will be a bright summer for some 44 girls who will be part of the University of West Indies (UWI) Mary Seacole Hall's 'I'm Glad I'm a Girl' summer camp, which will begin July 8, through to July 15.
Camp coordinator, Shanique Campbell, explained at the launch on May 27 at the UWI that this is the second time the camp would be held and the main objective is to target young girls from rural and inner-city areas, and implement programmes that would assist in their holistic development while giving them hope.
Connie Powell, age 19, who attended the camp in its first year, told The Gleaner that growing up with both parents who were farmers was a struggle as sometimes things got extremely tough. As a result, she encountered various personal issues. However, after going to the camp, her life was totally transformed.
"I wasn't a privileged child. It was really tough growing up. Sometimes, especially on Fridays, I couldn't go to school; but my parents tried their best. I didn't know what it was like to have dreams. I was just living. I endured a lot of criticism.
"The camp was heaven-sent. Although I was never a sociable person and wasn't exposed to certain things, it was really an eye-opener for me. I met different people. We had to do different presentations every day, and so I eventually came out of my shell. It was excellent, still a struggle, but I had to make it," she said.
The 19-year-old said that she is looking forward to continuing her studies at the University of the West Indies come September.
According to Campbell, participants will have a myriad of activities to look forward to including martial arts, presentations on self-esteem aimed at improving their social skills, and achieving goals.
"I got pregnant during my teens but was fortunate to pick myself up and pursue my education. Not everyone has that opportunity," she said.
"We want to help girls to have a sense of worth. Many young girls are suffering from severe depression so we want to make a difference," she said.