Youth charity Snow-Camp have returned from their latest adventure in the French Alps, having taken 120 disadvantaged young people and staff from across London on the experience of a lifetime. The 2008 trip was the biggest Snow-Camp to date, with youth projects from across the capital benefiting from Snow-Camp’s unique blend of skiing, snowboarding and life-skills sessions, focussing on key issues for young people.
Snow-Camp Director, Dan Charlish, said: ‘We are really encouraged by the continued success and growth of the project, and the positive impact it has on young people. It is always rewarding to see the positive changes in young people through the experience of a completely different environment and through overcoming the challenges of learning to ski and snowboard. The life-skills sessions were full of stories of young people finding new strength and courage within themselves, developing new skills and growing in confidence and self esteem. It makes it all worthwhile.’
Snow-Camp 2008 had the same focus of taking young people from urban estate environments to the fantastic scenery of the Alps, teaching them to ski or snowboard and working intensively with them through the life-skills course. Taking young people from across the capital also enables Snow-Camp to challenge gang culture, as young people from different areas of London realise their many similarities and learn to work together over the week.
The young people who attended this year are now looking forward to getting back together for the Snow-Camp movie premiere in July, when the film of the week will be shown at Brixton’s Ritzy cinema. ‘It’s a fantastic evening,’ says Dan Charlish, ‘not only for the young people, who get to see themselves in action on the big screen, but also for all the staff, volunteers, supporters, companies and funders who help make the project happen.’
The charity has also recently launched its sister project, Snow-Camp London, using dry ski slopes and snow domes as a basis for summer programmes supporting young people. Associate Director Liv Cheasty said: ‘We are excited about the potential of the new Snow-Camp London project. We can now run programmes all year round, reaching many more inner-city young people. The first pilot courses were a great success, enabling 90 young people to learn to ski, complete the life-skills courses, and have a fantastic experience – so we have big plans to expand the project this summer!’ More support still needed!
Snow-Camp is now looking for more support to develop the project. To get involved or to make a donation please contact Dan Charlish on 07930 695384. For general information, photos and to watch the most recent Snow-Camp movie, check out their website at www.snow-camp.co.uk