Camp fYrefly Saskatchewan
Saskatoon, SK - August 13-16, 2015  

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About Camp fYrefly

Camp fYrefly (www.fYrefly.ualberta.ca) is Canada’s largest, volunteer-based, summer leadership retreat for sexual minority and gender variant (lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans-identified, two-spirited, intersexed, queer, questioning) and allied youth. The camp, which was founded in 2004 by Dr. André P. Grace and Mr. Kristopher Wells, is designed to help youth develop the leadership skills and resiliency necessary for them to become change agents in their schools, families, and communities.

All of the camp workshops and guest speakers help youth to develop their very own fYrefly fuel designed to help them keep their inner light shining bright during dark times.

"The firefly is one of the only animals that produces its own energy, which I think is a poignant symbol for the camp," says Kris Wells, the camp's director and co-founder. "We want to move youth from feeling at risk to feeling resilient in their communities, so that their own light can glow in dark times."

In partnership with the Faculty of Education, University of Regina and the College of Education, University of Saskatchewan, Camp fYrefly-Saskatchewan will be held in Saskatchewan (alternating between Saskatoon and Regina) each summer.

Community stakeholders along with Camp fYrefly founders joined together in a province-wide initiative to identify the needs of sexual minority and gender variant youth and develop the resources required to implement a Saskatchewan-based camp. Camp fYrefly-Saskatchewan is dedicated to the guiding principle of helping sexual minority and gender variant youth move from being "at-risk" to a place where they can be resilient and positively address the challenges of adolescence and young adulthood.

Our partnership with our two Saskatchewan universities and association with the Faculty of Education, University of Alberta, will ensure research-informed programming, sound pedagogical principles, and financial accountability.

The camp is peer driven and jam-packed with drama, music, writing, visual art, empowerment and reflection exercises, anti-oppression work, personal growth opportunities, healthy socialization, and in-depth learning activities about specific youth topics and social issues. The camp will feature day and evening workshops, with designated time set aside for personal reflection, community building, and social activities.

  • Potential workshop topics include:
  • Leadership skill-building
  • Confronting bias and dealing with diversity
  • Combating preconceived notions and confronting stereotypes
  • Coming out and coming-to-terms with sexual minority and gender diversity issues
  • Negotiating relationships with peers, parents, and care givers
  • Healthy dating and relationship skills
  • Bullying and discrimination
  • Challenging oppression through art
  • Youth health and safety
  • Participatory drama
  • Youth networking, self-esteem, and resiliency building
  • Nurturing ourselves

Our Mission

Camp fYrefly-Saskatchewan is an educational, social, and personal learning retreat for sexual minority and gender variant youth (lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans-identified, two-spirited, intersexed, queer, questioning, and allied). It focuses on building and nurturing their leadership potential and personal resiliency in an effort to help them learn how to make significant contributions to their own lives and to their schools, home/group-home environments, and communities. The camp is designed for sexual minority and gender variant youth between the ages of 14 and 24.

Our History

Camp fYrefly was founded in 2004 as a university-community educational project by Dr. André P. Grace and Mr. Kristopher Wells, who are educators in the Faculty of Education, University of Alberta. In 2008, in partnership with the Faculty of Education, University of Regina and the College of Education, University of Saskatchewan, committees of dedicated volunteers were formed by Anthony Bidulka and Herb McFaull with the now-realized goal of bringing Camp fYrefly to Saskatchewan.

Our resource team includes adult educators, schoolteachers, artists, musicians, business professionals, psychologists, dramatists, dancers, writers, law enforcement officers, clergy, politicians, community volunteers, and queer cultural workers. Camp philosophy and programming also emphasizes a by-youth-for-youth approach in which older youth and adult facilitators mentor and help to support younger youth. In the spirit of advancing youth leadership, a youth advisory committee guides the development and delivery of our wide-ranging camp leadership-and-learning program.

Camp fYrefly-Saskatchewan would not be possible without the tremendous support of many individual and corporate sponsors and volunteers who donate their time, talent, and financial support to help make the camp a much needed reality for sexual minority and gender variant youth throughout Saskatchewan and Canada.

U of S LogoU of Regina LogoSIAST LogoCanadian Teachers Federation LogoISMSS logoU of Alberta logo
Camp fYrefly is a University-Community project founded by the Institute for Sexual Minority Studies and Services(SMSS), Faculty of Education, University of Alberta. The University of Regina is licensed to use this Mark by the Governors of the University of Alberta.