Wizard Royce Pritchard and Princess Everley (18 months) play in their homemade cardboard castle as they get ready for the upcoming Virtual Family Fair being put on by the Campbell River Family Network Nov. 16 to 27. Princess Everley’s stuffies have since moved into the edifice. Photo submitted

Wizard Royce Pritchard and Princess Everley (18 months) play in their homemade cardboard castle as they get ready for the upcoming Virtual Family Fair being put on by the Campbell River Family Network Nov. 16 to 27. Princess Everley’s stuffies have since moved into the edifice. Photo submitted

Campbell River’s Child Day celebration goes virtual and expands to two weeks

‘We’re hoping to replicate what the fair would normally be, minus the noise and the facepainting’

Going back many years now, Campbell River families have swarmed the Community Centre on one day in the middle of November to celebrate children.

National Child Day serves as a reminder that children and youth are to be protected from all forms of child abuse, neglect and exploitation and have the right to be safe and grow up in a healthy environment. That day is Nov. 20.

Unfortunately, due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, it would be irresponsible to flood the Community Centre with rambunctious youngsters having their faces painted, putting on fun little plays, climbing through imaginary cities made of cardboard boxes, painting pictures, making crafts and just being free to be kids.

But because the annual event also serves as a way for local organizations to get the word out to families about the services they offer, the Campbell River Family Network decided it was important to still do what they could to celebrate the day and give those service providers an outlet to strut their stuff while still making it fun for the kids.

The Campbell River Family Network is a coalition of not-for-profit organizations that work collaboratively on projects or initiatives that “enhance our community in ways that are supportive to families,” according to Joyce McMann with Campbell River Family Services.

“We weren’t able to do the Children’s Health Fair that we normally do in April, and now with National Child Day coming up and things gradually starting to reopen, we felt it was important to start to reconnect people with the services that are available within the community,” says Jennifer Furst with the City of Campbell River, one of the partners in the coalition.

It’s a great opportunity, McMann agrees, for local organizations to tell local families how they’re weathering the COVID storm and moving forward.

“Everything shut down,” McMann says, “and now people are wondering, ‘Is that open? What’s happening with this? What’s happening with that?’ and we needed a strategy to reacquaint people with what actually is available right now under these challenging circumstances.”

RELATED: Campbell River celebrates National Child Day

What they settled on was to use the “Helping Children in Campbell River” Facebook page where they could post short clips from the organizations over the course of two weeks so people could come and check in at their leisure rather than at set times.

But it’s not all about publicity for different organizations and service agencies in the community. It’s also about fun.

“We’re working on ways to bring a participation aspect into it and make it as fun as it can be,” says Cheryl Jordan with the Campbell River Literacy Association. “There might even be some prizes for things like the ‘at-home cardboard city’ we’re asking people to do, where they can make a fort or something in their living room, that kind of thing.”

The idea came to the group quite organically.

“We were looking around at what some other communities were doing, and there were a lot of things moving online on Zoom,” Jordan says. “But I know there are a lot of people out there who are pretty Zoomed out right now, so a couple of us started brainstorming to see how we could make it happen in a way that would benefit the families as well as the organizations and agencies, without being boring or stale.

“So we’re looking at maybe three to five clips per day going up on the Facebook page,” Jordan continues. “We don’t want to overwhelm people, and we’ve kept the videos down under five minutes from each agency or organization, and it’s up to them how they want to showcase what they’re doing or if they just want to share a fun activity of some kind.”

So head over to facebook.com/helpingchildrenincampbellriver and follow along as the posts roll out between Nov. 16 and 27 to see the fun being had and learn a bit more about the services currently available for families in our community.

“We’re hoping to replicate what the fair would normally be, minus the noise and the face painting,” McMann says.



miked@campbellrivermirror.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Campbell RiverFamilies

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

The Klahoose First Nation village on Cortes Island is under lockdown until further notice due to a positive COVID-19 test. Photo courtesy Kevin Peacey.
Klahoose First Nation community locked down due to positive COVID-19 test

Cortes Island community has had one positive test, one other potential case

An aerial view of Zeballos. (Photo/A. Janisse)
Zeballos closes public service areas ahead of second wave

Library, landfill and village office closed until further notice, says mayor

Greenways Land Trust Executive Director Cynthia Bendickson points out one particular area of concern within the Baikie Island Nature Reserve that hasn’t benefitted from replanting efforts due to soil compaction and pollution from its days as a log sort. File Photo by Mike Davies/Campbell River Mirror
Greenways Land Trust gets $275K for restoration work on Baikie Island

Two-year project will start with the development of a 10-year plan for the area

Campbell River city council recently held a roundtable meeting with leaders from the aquaculture and forestry industries to discuss how they can be part of a post-COVID economic recovery in the region.
Campbell River city council holds roundtable on aquaculture, forestry

Will go forward with quarterly meetings involving industry leaders to address issues in the sectors

The Carihi Fly Fishing Club is touted as an example of incorporating the outdoors into the education curriculum in SD72. Photo submitted.
SD72 schools and educators embrace outdoor education and learning outdoors

The Campbell River School District has embraced the movement to incorporate nature… Continue reading

B.C. Health Minister Adrian Dix and provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry update the COVID-19 situation at the B.C. legislature, Nov. 23, 2020. (B.C. government)
B.C. sets another COVID-19 record with 887 new cases

Another 13 deaths, ties the highest three days ago

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

Police in Nanaimo are looking for a suspect who wore a black-and-white striped hoodie and rode a yellow mountain bike when he allegedly stole three children’s backpacks from a daycare facility. (Photo submitted)
VIDEO: Thief steals children’s backpacks from daycare in Nanaimo

Suspect rode a yellow mountain bike and made off with backpacks hanging on fence

Arthur Topham has been sentenced to one month of house arrest and three years of probation after breaching the terms of his probation. Topham was convicted of promoting hate against Jewish people in 2015. (Photo submitted)
Quesnel man convicted for anti-Semitic website sentenced to house arrest for probation breach

Arthur Topham was convicted of breaching probation following his 2017 sentence for promoting hatred

Langley School District's board office. (Langley Advance Times files)
‘Sick Out’ aims to pressure B.C. schools over masks, class sizes

Parents from Langley and Surrey are worried about COVID safety in classrooms

Ladysmith’s 1st Avenue will be lit up until January 15. (Cole Schisler photo)
Light Up parade a no-go, but Ladysmith’s streets are still all aglow

Although the tradition Light Up this year was cancelled, folks can still enjoy the holiday lights

The baby boy born to Gillian and Dave McIntosh of Abbotsford was released from hospital on Wednesday (Nov. 25) while Gillian continues to fight for her life after being diagnosed with COVID-19.
B.C. mom with COVID-19 still fighting for life while newborn baby now at home

Son was delivered Nov. 10 while Gillian McIntosh was in an induced coma

Gracie couldn’t stop nursing from her previous owner’s goats which was problematic given the goats were trying to be dried out to breed. Gracie now lives at A Home for Hooves. (Sarah Simpson/Citizen)
Cowichan animal sanctuary gets international accreditation

A Home for Hooves farm sanctuary accredited by the Global Federation of Animal Sanctuaries

Most Read