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Aboriginal Youth Ignite All Star Camp at UTSC

More than 40 aboriginal youth from across the GTA took part in UTSC's All Star Camp put on by the Department of Athletics and Recreation. (Submitted photo)

Pachi, the TO2015 mascot, was on hand to welcome 40 aboriginal youth from across the GTA to the University of Toronto Scarborough’s Department of Athletics and Recreation All Star Camp during the week of August 5 – 8.

The young people, ranging in age from seven to twelve, are participating in a variety of sports including a specially designed session on the history of lacrosse—which pre-dates even the earliest European settlers to Canada—and a lacrosse clinic delivered by First Nations players. The aboriginal youth are joining other campers in a full program that includes mornings in a multi-sport activity, and afternoons of discovery in computers, drama, and arts and crafts workshops. Participants aged nine and older are staying on campus, with evenings spent exploring culture with Elder Cat Creiger and UTSC students, including cooking dinners with indigenous food themes and campfire gatherings.

“The summer camp is a great opportunity to bring aboriginal youth and the PanAm spirit together on our campus a year out from hosting the games,” says Scott McRoberts, UTSC’s director of Athletics and Recreation. “Our counsellors are UTSC students, and they are thrilled to welcome these young people to campus, with its beautiful natural setting and outstanding facilities. This is a fabulous opportunity for us to offer unique programming and enjoy seeing kids learn, play and be challenged.”

The aboriginal youth camp session is tied in with next year’s PanAm & Parapan American Games Ignite initiative, which promotes community sports and recreation, healthy living, and arts and culture, while fostering diversity and inclusion.  Funding for the group’s participation at All Star Camp was provided by Aboriginal Sport and Wellness Council of Ontario, TO2015, and the Government of Ontario.

© University of Toronto Scarborough