Joy of giving at the heart of TCC’s Children’s Holiday Camp
IT IS AN event designed to brighten the lives of Rockhampton youngsters and their families who face daily challenges, but it is equally rewarding for those who help deliver it.
This is the 11th year The Cathedral College has hosted the annual Sony Children’s Holiday Camp.
It is normally a three-day sleepover for 30 primary school students but, due to COVID, this year was run as a one-day event for 10.
The enjoyment for the special guests was palpable as shrieks of delight and peals of laughter carried across TCC’s oval on Saturday as they took part in a series of activities which culminated in a fun fair, complete with jumping castle and giant slide.
The camp is run by TCC’s Youth Ministry, co-ordinated by teachers Jacinta Taske and Grace Griffin.
Miss Taske said primary schools across the city were invited to suggest students who would most benefit from the camp.
“We were afraid that is was going to be cancelled because of COVID but luckily we’ve still been able to go ahead with it,” Miss Taske said.
“We scaled it back to a one-day event jam-packed full of different rotational activities and a fun fair.
“We’ve done craft, cup-cake decorating and a few team bonding activities as well.
“We’ve got kids here from a range of different backgrounds and with different abilities.
“The highlight is seeing the joy that this brings to them but also knowing that it benefits their parents as well, giving them a day of respite.
“It’s been fun, it’s a really uplifting day.
“It’s nice for our staff and students to be involved and share in the joy of giving, especially during this season.”
Miss Taske was joined by nine other TCC staff members, as well as 30 Year 10 and 11s who volunteered their time to act as companions for the 10 guests.
Among them was Year 11 student Ellie Warren, who buddied up with 10 year old Thomas.
“I stuck with him all day. If he was uncomfortable with anything, then we would do our own thing, and we just catered to his abilities and his wants and needs for the day,” she said.
“He definitely loved the jumping castle and he was very excited for the big slide.”
Ellie, who is looking to pursue a career in special education, said Tom had a vivid imagination and loved telling stories.
She said it was wonderful to watch him interact and engage and have fun.
“He has the biggest smile and it’s so cute. Just seeing him smile and be happy is all I could ask for,” she said.