A summer camp focused on creating a positive environment for sexual minorities and gender variants got a little financial boost from a race in red.
The University of Alberta’s Camp fYrefly, now in its seventh year, was chosen by Edmonton’s Hash House Harriers to be the recipient of their annual Red Dress Run which was held last Saturday.
Carl Busch, program coordinator for Camp fYrefly said his program and the Hash House Harriers worked closely after fYrefly was chosen. “We’ve been working closely with the community and getting our word out. So far it’s been really beneficial,” said Busch. “If we can get our word out to more people then they can tell others.”
The run is designed to help a specific group or charity each year, and with assistance and aid going to fYrefly this time, Busch said it will do more than just help kids get to a summer camp.
“It’s not just a program that changes lives, it saves them,” said Busch. “These youths come to us feeling alone … to know other people like them and understand the issues they’ve dealt with — it’s really important.”
The camp started as a day program and morphed into its current incarnation after youth told the staff said they couldn’t find a program like this for a summer camp.
Busch said that the program is vital in showing the kids attending that they’re not alone in their day to day problems, which is crucial in getting their them through difficult issues.
“(These kids) do get bullied for their sexual orientation,” said Busch. “It’s really important to get the word out on the difficulties the youth go through and support them through programs like fYrefly.”
Camp fYrefly runs from July 22-25. For more information, visit their website at fyrefly.ualberta.ca.
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