Camp Mas­saw­ippi goes four sea­sons with new ice rink

Stanstead Journal - - FRONT PAGE -

On July 29th, An­drew Mol­son, Ré­jean Houle, Min­is­ter Marie-Claude Bibeau, Ayer’s Cliff mayor Alec van Zuiden, Camp Mas­saw­ippi Board Chair­man Keith Hardie and sev­eral Board Di­rec­tors were present at Camp Mas­saw­ippi to in­au­gu­rate the camp’s first ice rink. The rink, a do­na­tion from the Mon­treal Cana­di­ens Chil­dren’s Foun­da­tion, will al­low such win­ter ac­tivi-

ties as sledge hockey and adapted skat­ing. In the sum­mer months the rink will al­low campers in wheel­chairs to en­gage in adapted sports that are oth­er­wise im­pos­si­ble on grass.

“This rink will al­low Camp Mas­saw­ippi to be a true am­bas­sador for adapted sports, on the wa­ter and now on land,” said Nathalie Roy, the Camp Di­rec­tor.

From a phys­i­cal per­spec­tive, sports pro­mote bal­ance, co­or­di­na­tion, gross motor func­tion, agility, and body aware­ness – each of which are im­por­tant ther­a­peu­tic goals. It also in­creases cog­ni­tive skills such as spa­tial aware­ness, tim­ing, as well as split sec­ond de­ci­sion-mak­ing and strate­gic think­ing.

From a psy­cho-so­cial per­spec­tive, sports help chil­dren learn sports­man­ship and how to make new friends. They learn real-life val­ues, such as ac­cep­tance of peo­ple’s dif­fer­ences, in­clu­sion and col­lab­o­ra­tion. Par­ents learn that their child can par­tic­i­pate in ac­tiv­i­ties with oth­ers their age, and come to rec­og­nize new op­por­tu­ni­ties for their child. By set­ting and reach­ing goals that once seemed unattain­able, chil­dren with phys­i­cal im­pair­ments learn the value of en­durance and gain self-con­fi­dence and self­es­teem.

Far and above the phys­i­cal ben­e­fits, sports pro­vide a wel­come escape from an of­ten in­ac­tive life­style and from the so­cial iso­la­tion of­ten felt by chil­dren with dis­abil­i­ties.

Camp Mas­saw­ippi is a bilin­gual sleep-away camp of­fer­ing spe­cial­ized pro­gram­ming for campers aged be­tween 6 and 30 years old, who are liv­ing with a phys­i­cal dis­abil­ity, who are deaf or hear­ing im­paired, blind or vis­ually im­paired. It is lo­cated on a beau­ti­ful fully adapted 19-acre site on the shores of Lake Mas­saw­ippi in Québec’s East­ern Town­ships.

The Mon­treal Cana­di­ens Chil­dren’s Foun­da­tion is deter­mined to pro­vide a bet­ter and health­ier fu­ture for chil­dren in need. Since its in­cep­tion in Au­gust 2000, the Foun­da­tion has do­nated over $20 mil­lion to 697 char­i­ta­ble en­deav­ors through­out the prov­ince of Que­bec work­ing for the well-be­ing of un­der­priv­i­leged chil­dren.

Photo cour­tesy

Ré­jean Houle, Camp Mas­saw­ippi Board Chair­man Keith Hardie, An­drew Mol­son, Ayer’s Cliff mayor Alec van Zuiden, Min­is­ter Marie-Claude Bibeau and sev­eral Board Di­rec­tors were present at Camp Mas­saw­ippi to in­au­gu­rate the camp’s first ice rink.

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