The future of the Canadian Rangers are in the North Okanagan.
Each year, Junior Canadian Rangers from across Canada participate in enhanced training sessions. This year, they are in Vernon until July 30.
The location is ideal for the planned activities which include canoeing at Kin Beach to help build confidence and a two-day hiking expedition in Winfield.
The accessibility provides a contrast to the previous camp-outs where activities were often at least an hour away.
“This is ideal,” said Alan Robertson, one of the JCR instructors.
“The set up at d-lines (Vernon Army Camp barracks) is perfect for the camp and there is so much here to offer.”
The training provides junior rangers with unique skills that transfer to their local patrols and help them get involved in their communities.
“It’s very important because I like taking it back to my patrol and telling them how much fun it is because it boosts some of their confidence to come out on these trips,” said 17-year-old Sammee Comer, a JCR mentor from Pouce Coupe.
Included among the many activities was Pay it Forward, a community awareness day Thursday.
It saw the rangers volunteer at various locations throughout the community and the event ended with a barbecue at the barracks.
Becoming a JCR provides youth with a great opportunity to be successful for the future whether they continue on as rangers or not.
“It’s really important, you learn teamwork, how to survive and how to work together,” said Chelsea ColCol, an 18-year-old mentor, from Alert Bay.
“It builds up your self-esteem, gives you confidence and gives you the ideal of helping each other out without being asked. It gives you the ability to think for yourself rather than waiting for someone to tell you.”