MS summer camp fun, educational


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August 7, 2014 10:30 AM

The best part of a camp day is perhaps snack time, and it was no different at the MS Camp for Kids on Aug. 6 at the Lloydminster Community Services Centre. - Tom Pierson Photo

Learning about MS usually doesn’t happen at a convenient time for anyone. If you are one of the many people affected by this disease in your family, a good thing to do is learn about it. The more you learn, the less scary it becomes.

“Kids Camp – every year for three and a half days we have a camp for children who want to learn more about MS,” said Patty Tweedle, client services co-ordinator for the MS Society in the Lloydminster Chapter.

“Either they have a parent, a grandparent, an aunt, an uncle, somebody that are really close friends that has MS. It is just to educate the children and teach them about MS and let them know that they are not alone.”

At the camp, the starting point is when the children meet others who have the same situation in their lives. When it comes to the numbers registered for camp this year, Tweedle says the numbers are up. Activities vary, and the mornings is craft time with a little bit of education on MS.

After a snack, in the afternoon, “We go and do a community outing,” said Tweedle. (Monday) we did the petting zoo, (Tuesday) we are touring the fire hall, and (Wednesday) we are going to Bud Miller to the swimming pool.” Of course, there will also be an outdoor picnic.

“On Friday, we invite the parents to come and we have a pizza party at lunch, and the kids show their parents everything that they’ve done,” said Tweedle. The kids will test their parents’ knowledge with the fish because the fish have questions on MS. “The kids were amazing yesterday, they answered a lot of the questions correctly that the fish had on their backs.”

Summer camps are supposed to be fun, and this one was no different. “It’s always a lot of fun,” said Tweedle. “That’s always the best way to teach kids, through play-based learning.”

“I love having this camp every year.” Not the only one who enjoys the camp, there are a couple of repeat customers. Too old for the camp, they enjoy helping where they can.

A very successful camp every year, Tweedle was happy to report, “Just Kruzin’ car club gave us our funding to put on this camp and make it possible.”

Stephen Bowman is one of the camp’s oldtimers at a very young age. “Meeting new people,” he said is one of the reasons that keeps him coming back. ” And having the same experience, having a good time, getting out of the house, it’s very enjoyable.”

Another good reason to attend camp is what Bowman says is, “They feed us well.”

As for the future, he foresees himself returning for many years to come. When asked if he will become a volunteer as he gets older, the answer was already slipping past his lips, “I plan to come back here for many years.”

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