There’s a new program in town to help keep kids active on no-school-days.
The program is from a non-profit organization called Uplift Association, which was founded in August of this year by four local women and serves Fernie, Sparwood, and Elkford.
Cari Munro, one of the four ‘Uplifters’, does learning instruction and program development for Uplift. She said there’s no reason the three communities can’t have more kids programming like bigger cities do.
“There’s so many options in big cities, but these are such active communities. There’s no reason that Fernie couldn’t be offering these things.”
The association offers both kids and family support programming. A full list can be found on their website.
“(We’re) looking at where there’s gaps in the communities and seeing how we can fill them for people.”
Munro said there has always been a waiting list for Fernie School Aged Care, which runs out of Max Turyk Community Centre, so Uplift figured there is a need for what they’re providing.
Their initial focus for the no-school-days program is to provide morning activities from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. for Grade 2 to 6.
According to Munro, they hope that they can “wear some kids out by lunch time when they go home, and then they can have a chill afternoon.”
The first No School Group met on Nov. 26 at the Fernie Elks Hall, which donated space for the program. The morning featured fort building and capture the flag. Five more days are planned for the year’s no-school-days. Other activities will include: ice skating, swimming, laser tag, and wilderness survival. They hope to have a day of wall climbing as well.
Program capacity for now is 10 to 20 kids, Munro said, and is staff-dependent. Uplift is welcoming high school volunteers to help.
A single session pass costs $35, a four-session pass costs $130, and a six-session pass is $180. Siblings can share a pass.
“We figured we’d start small and see how it goes, and then go from there.”