Syracuse’s Camp Discovery aims to help girls build connections and skills after a year in isolation

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SYRACUSE, N.Y. (WSYR-TV) — Calling all campers! The YWCA is gearing up for its annual summer program for girls, and it starts next week.

Coming out of the pandemic, the eight-week-long program will be filled with fun and learning, but it will also help younger kids rebuild skills after a year without socialization.

For more than a year, masks were part of every school’s uniform. Now, with so many people vaccinated, masks will be optional at Camp Discovery. If parents feel comfortable, their child won’t need one.

For many girls, they’ll be learning and growing face to face with friends for the first time in a long time.

“I think it’s going to be an awesome opportunity to share and feel again the sisterhood that we used to have before,” said Executive Director of the YWCA, Fanny Villarreal.

Villarreal says camps can serve as an outlet from the pandemic and a way to keep kid’s minds moving all summer long.

“We have actually a Google curriculum that we are going to be utilizing this year,” she said.

Throughout the camp, girls will get experience in things like arts and crafts, technology, math. They’ll also have access to a media room. It’s all about getting hands-on experience in different careers to help them realize, whatever they aspire to do is in reach.

When you are a young age and you’re exposed to a lot of different ways, that’s when your mind starts thinking, ‘oh I could be a doctor or I could be an engineer.’

Fanny Villarreal

Part of the program will include Upstate Medical University’s Reach One Teach One (ROTO) program.

“Everything is about the opportunity to expose the girls at a very young age about opportunities in the medical field.”

Fanny Villarreal

They’ll also take part in the Passport to The World Club, where they’ll cook different meals with a chef from Canada and learn about each culture.

Villarreal hopes the program will bring community connections, inspire girls to reach for the stars, and build a sisterhood.

“We are making sure they are smart, strong, and bold.

FANNY VILLARREAL

The camp is almost full. They have a program for five to 12-year-old girls and a teen program for girls 13 and up.

To learn about the cost and registration, click here. You can also call 315-424-0040.

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