Supporting students to become leaders in their community 

As Power To Be gears up for a busy season of programs at its Prospect Lake site, we were honoured to have Dola Dube, Executive Assistant of the Norgaard Foundation, come and present $50,000 to support our Wilderness School.  She was joined by Megan Millar, Manager of Core Programs, and Dana Hutchings, Director of Advancement and Communications, who shared about the impact the Wilderness School has had on youth in Victoria.

The Norgaard Foundation has been a strong supporter of Power To Be for over 10 years, and Dola has seen first-hand the progress participants make in the Wilderness School program.  “On graduation day, I am excited to see the growth, the confidence, and the teamwork in the participants,” she shared.  The Foundation’s generous donation will support even more youths in Grades 8-10 to have that experience.

Megan shared about one such youth in a story about her recent conversation with a Year 3 Wilderness School participant.  When she asked him why he chose not to go on the March Break trip this year, he replied, “Because I planned a camping trip for me and my friends to get outside on our own.”  He brought them to places where he had been on Power To Be adventures and, when asked whether he would have done that without his Wilderness School experience, he said, “No way!”  Though she was puzzled at first that he chose not to go on the trip, Megan was thrilled to see the ripple effect that the program has had in this youth’s life.  “The exposure and experience gained with Power To Be have set him up to be a leader to his friends and family.  He has gained the skills, confidence, and ability to bring them out in nature.”

“That’s the best!” Dola commented.  It reminded her of the special relationships formed at Power To Be among the staff, volunteers and parents who support the participants:  “Everyone’s right there with them, all the way through.”

The Norgaard Foundation is a private Victoria-based foundation with a mission to support individuals with barriers to access programs based on their unique needs.  “Our basic philosophy is to give a leg up, to help where no other help is found for those with the greatest need,” says Dola.  Though they are open to new requests every year, the Foundation mainly supports a few select organizations, including Victoria Therapeutic Riding Association, Island Kids Cancer Association, VWTH PEACE Camp, and adaptive technologies through CanAssist at the University of Victoria.

From everyone at Power To Be, thank you so much to the Norgaard Foundation for your continued support of our Wilderness School.