Children celebrate International Youth Day
Children in Lachine celebrated International Youth day with the second annual "Play it Fair" event.
With an Olympic theme, but not concerned about competition, children worked on co-operating and learning new language skills.
Traditional day camp games like musical chairs are re-interpreted to teach inclusion instead of exclusion.
According to Ian Hamilton of the human rights group Equitas, which organized the event, counsellors received training to teach children about getting along with different cultures.
"Kids are naturally empathetic," said Hamilton, "but often they don't have the opportunity to really think about what's happening. Once they realize how the kids being excluded are feeling then they're moved to act to change the way they behave."
The initiative, which began in 2006, is now at work in 150 day camps across Montreal.
In 2009 the Play it Fair program received a provincial award for its role in fighting racism in Quebec.