Brigadoon Village expansion at Aylesford Lake, N.S., nearing completion
Original article posted by Saltwire | Posted: April 17, 2022, 7:18 p.m. | Updated: April 17, 2022, 7:18 p.m. | Jason Malloy · Lead editor, Annapolis Valley Register
Scott Flemming smiles when he looks around and sees the expansion of Brigadoon Village taking shape.
What was once an idea contained in conceptual drawings is becoming a reality at the Aylesford Lake camp.
“It’s a great feeling to see this happening in real life,” he said. “To see it all come together is incredible.”
Flemming is a Brigadoon Village board member and a co-chair of the $12.5-million Shine On! capital campaign to fund the expansion.
The campaign, which started a few months before the COVID-19 pandemic began, was boosted by some early donors and $3 million from each of the federal and provincial governments. It enabled the project to move faster than originally anticipated and it is now nearing completion.
“We’re thrilled with where we are with the project,” Flemming said. “Everyone in the community has really backed this project and that’s why we’re a million dollars short of our goal.”
$1.7 million gift for Brigadoon is largest in camp’s history
The expansion will allow the camp to host more children and provide enhanced accommodations for medical staff. The project will also provide new experiences for campers to gain confidence, independence, and resilience, such as an outdoor kitchen, a new arts and culture centre with a pottery kiln, a high ropes course, a giant swing, a climbing tower, additional waterfront activities and many other features.
A high ropes course and climbing tower are just two of the new additions to Brigadoon Village. – Jason Malloy
While a big part of capital campaigns is the money raised, they are also about the cause. It is something that is always front and centre for Brigadoon officials.
“It’s about the kids,” Flemming said.
Shirt sales to support Brigadoon
A Dartmouth company has designed and produced a limited-edition Brigadoon T-shirt and will be donating 100 per cent of the proceeds to Brigadoon Village.
The shirts feature an image of Brigadoon Village’s arts and culture hub and will be available until April 20.
New Scotland Clothing Company co-founder Scott Saccary said similar fundraisers have been successful in the past and Brigadoon was the perfect candidate for this year’s campaign.
“More than 80 per cent of the kids who attend camp at Brigadoon rely on financial support – we’re proud to be part of the village it takes to get them there,” he said.
Brigadoon Village CEO David Graham said New Scotland has been a great community champion since it began.
“We’re thrilled that they’ve chosen to support Brigadoon Village and the thousands of kids living with chronic health conditions who attend our camps each year.”
More information about the shirts can be found online at newscotlandclothing.ca.
Brigadoon Village is a non-profit pediatric medical camp that delivers year-round camp programming to children, youth, and families living with health conditions or other life challenges in Atlantic Canada. It began about a decade ago.
Since then, the demand has grown dramatically.
Did you know?
In 2018, 713 kids attended Brigadoon Village, supported by more than 30 medical staff spread over the summer (about three to four each week) and more than 40 camp staff.
The capital campaign will help fulfil the vision of Brigadoon’s late founder, Dave McKeage, of expanding the facilities to accommodate more kids and creating new recreational spaces for campers to learn and grow.
“Dave would be thrilled,” Flemming said. “He’d just be blown away with what we’re doing down at camp.”
While some capital campaigns slow while trying to secure the final components of funding for their project, Flemming is not nervous about this project, given the nature of Atlantic Canadians and how Brigadoon has connected with the community.
“I have such faith in the philanthropy of individuals and companies where we live,” he said. “I think Brigadoon has really struck a chord with people.”