Manpal Mangat is the Interim Director at Camp Awakening, a role that utilizes his passions for summer camp, outdoor recreation and inclusion. Manpal draws on his 6 years of summer camp leadership experience, as well as his time spent teaching abroad. He is an avid backcountry and canoe tripper, and is elated to be able to facilitate similar trips for his campers.
Kendra Heney is the Assistant Director at Camp Awakening, a role that allows her to combine her passions of Disability Studies and inclusive recreation. Kendra has 19 years of summer camp experience, during which she has held numerous leadership positions, most recently as a Camp Director. Kendra is grateful to camp as it has provided numerous wonderful opportunities, skills and friendships that she believes all children should be able to experience.
Tracy Morley is the Executive Director (on maternity leave) at Camp Awakening, a dream job which allows her to combine over 15 years of not-for-profit experience with a lifetime of summer camp knowledge. She is passionate about outdoor recreation and firmly believes in the life-changing magic of camp. She wishes she could start every day jumping in a lake and end each day around a campfire.
Tracy recently served on the Board of Directors of the Ontario Camps Association (OCA) as the Director, Special Needs Subclass and is a Board Member and Fellow of The Society of Camp Directors. She is also a member of the Association of Fundraising Professionals and volunteers her time with a number of organizations devoted to positive youth development.
Summer Camp Staff
In most cases, our summer camp staff 'come up through the ranks' from camper to Leader-In-Training with our host camps Kilcoo and Oconto. During their second Leader-In-Training summer they volunteer for one to two sessions with Camp Awakening.
Staff members are at least 17 years of age, but typically older university students. They hold a current Bronze Cross or LS in lifesaving (or equivalent) and a Standard First Aid/CPR certification. Staff are also encouraged to complete the Wilderness First Aid (Basic) course. Our staff are trained on various medical needs and conditions specific to children with physical disabilities. Camp Awakening staff are also expected to have relevant experience camping, canoe-tripping, and working with youth with physical disabilities.
The boys’ and girls' programs each have their own staff which is comprised of a Program Director and two counsellors who are employed by Camp Awakening for the entire summer.
Our host camps also place second year leaders-in-training (LIT's) in the Awakening cabin each session. The LIT's from Kilcoo Camp and Semi's from Camp Oconto (different nicknames for different camps!) are volunteers and this is a great way for them to learn a lot about our program, types of disabilities, and how the Awakening campers integrate with the Kilcoo and Oconto campers.
Our staff have a full weekend of training specific to Camp Awakening plus a week of pre-camp at our host camps so that they are fully prepared to give our campers a successful summer. This “in house” training is a great way to ensure that we have top-notch staff – many of whom return for several years.
When our campers attend activity periods they benefit from the expertise of Kilcoo and Oconto instructors – this means that we get great coaching and learn great skills from specialists in their field.