LAYC Youth Grow Skills and Confidence Travelling to Edmonton
The LAYC directors approved a Hockey Trip to Edmonton for March 2015. To select youth for trips, LAYC uses a process that exposes youth to the skill of completing applications. An application is required by all interested youth that outlines the 5 W’s (who, what, where, when, why) of the trip, which they can submit in different ways including writing, drawing pictures or making a video. On February 20th, the selection committee of LAYC board directors met to review applications. The process was the same as the past, where the applicants get points for answers; these are added up at the bottom, with the highest numbers being selected. The committee then has dialogue on applicants. The successful youth were then called to confirm they were still interested and were able to attend, then all names were posted on Facebook.
The planning meeting went well, with parents and youth brainstorming and selecting activities. Homework was given to research and report back on details like hours of operation, cost and location (all completed!). Discussions of fundraising, and ideas of a bake sale at court day & dance, were supported by parents. The youth that could not attend the parent/youth meeting or fundraising events sold chocolates as a way to raise money and contribute towards the trip as well, with support of the coordinator, Tina Fraser.
They successfully raised $585.00, which was used towards their adventure. Everyone is keen to start fundraising earlier next time to raise even more money.
The chaperone was chosen as a community member who was able to drive in the city and held a credit card, also a Canadian Ranger and a parent, Raymond Ladouceur (Turkey) was decided by the coordinator after a board member was unable to attend.
The day before departure, a challenge arose with the hotel. Fortunately, LAYC board members pulled together to support the coordinator to find a solution. This required a change of hotels, so all parents were contacted. As it turns out the drive was great, youth were able to see real cows, a train and it gave time to circle up and have a good check in. Also the hotel was cheaper because it was out of the city!
Departure to Edmonton
The morning of the trip, ADCS called Tina to attend a circle up meeting with one of the youth. The youth had a dream of the hockey trip/flight and that there was an accident. The school counselor, elder, teacher and youth, with coordinator circled up and supported the youth to share his story. Upon talking more about the flight, it turned out the youth had never been on a charter or to Edmonton before; he was coached, validated and reassured by Tina and the trip went on as planned. The flight was smooth, snack and drinks were provided to the youth as well as games while on the plane (pass the toilet paper).
While waiting to board the plane in Chip, Ed Courtoreille, a community member, asked “what we were up to this time,” as he was aware of LAYC. When he found out the trip was to attend a hockey game in Edmonton, he offered support of special passes and contact information was shared. While at the Hockey game, Ed reached out and he had come through for the youth with passes to the Oilers’ area. Our youth were amazed as we went down to see the Edmonton Oilers come in and out of the dressing room! This was very exciting and we are so grateful! He stood outside in the snow with us while waiting for signatures and to meet the Oilers’—what a champion for our youth!
Overall Trip Highlights
Flight, car rental and all logistics were very smooth- we followed the agenda we had set out
Youth got to meet the Oilers players
Youth and parents were proud of the planning they did
High level of manners, growth, and taking care of self and others was demonstrated by all youth
Youth saw real cows, trains, realized that there is more than one 7-11 store in Edmonton
Youth learned money management
All youth did outstanding on this LAYC event, some youth had never been to Edmonton before and one had never been out of Fort Chipewyan before. These youth completed homework, and wherever they had done homework on, those same youth were the leaders of the trip (i.e. the young person who researched the Space Science Centre was in charge of making sure we were on time, had directions and tickets sorted, etc). Trip activities included: eating at McDonalds, going to the Space Science Centre, Speedster’s race cars track, and Waterpark, and going to the Oilers’ hockey game, of course!
Reflection from LAYC Coordinator, Tina Fraser: After being on both adventures this year, there is no comparison between the growth and self-esteem youth develop on the Hockey trip Vs. the Swim Trip. Tina explained, “The youth explained it to me like this: ‘Chicky, everyone gets to go to Fort Mac with their parents or on medical and stuff then but we never get to go anywhere else and just have fun, learn stuff and do it ourselves.’”
Our travels were posted Facebook – Please check out our Facebook Page!
Lessons Learned & Recommendations
Staying outside of Edmonton in Stoney Plain was cheaper and worth the experience
Would be great to have a LAYC director at parent/youth meeting
Circle up with youth before the parent/youth meeting
Advertise for the trip sooner, this would allow more time for fundraising!
Thank you to the youth who engaged with LAYC and helped make the trip happen, to the chaperones Tina and Turkey, to Ed for the experience of meeting the Oilers and to all who support the LAYC in different ways!