Rachel Takes the Plunge as a Camp Counsellor

December 11, 2019

Rachel, a Grade 11 student in New Brunswick, landed her first summer job as a Camp Counsellor with support from Neil Squire’s Working Together Program. Her long-term goal of working with children, combined with her love of fishing, made her summer employment at Hammond River Angling Association (opens in a new window)’s Nature Camp the perfect fit.

As a student with learning barriers, Rachel first began working with Neil Squire in their Assistive Technology: Capacity Building project, a partnership with New Brunswick’s Education and Early Childhood Department (opens in a new window). Through Neil Squire’s close work with the resource department at her school, Rachel began participating in the Working Together Program.

Working Together participant RachelRachel and her Career Facilitator met once a week and worked on self-assessment, resume building, job search techniques, and employment interview skills. During one of these meetings, Rachel and her Career Facilitator were making small talk about their respective weekends. Rachel shared that she had spent her days fishing with her dad, and she and the Career Facilitator proceeded to swap fishing stories and photos of their best catch. It was at this moment that the idea of approaching Hammond River Angling Association about summer employment was sparked.

The Job Developer at Neil Squire reached out to the employer and was able to set up an interview. Rachel was hesitant at first. As a self-proclaimed introvert, she was not too sure how she would do with a rowdy group of elementary aged school kids at an outdoor summer camp. After talking it over with her family and getting some interview tips from Working Together, Rachel took the plunge.

The employer was impressed with Rachel’s polite demeanor and positive attitude, and she was hired as a full-time Camp Counsellor, working 40 hours per week for the entire summer. Rachel immediately immersed herself in her role with complete confidence. The employer noted that Rachel was kind, keen, and always willing to work. She meshed well with the other staff and was always engaged with the campers.

When summer ended and it was time to return to school, Rachel left with glowing reviews from her employer. She is being recommended to be hired on again as part of next year’s summer staff. For the time being, she has returned to school with newfound confidence and paid work experience under her belt, setting her on a positive path for the future.