COVID-19 impacted the youth we serve and our local communities. At Tims Camps, we pivoted to continue to provide supports and services to the communities we serve.
Tims eCamp debuted in 2020 in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Our goal was to keep participants and staff safe while providing digital programs and resources to support youth development at a time when they needed our supports more than ever. In 2021, we revamped Tims eCamp with a newly designed and reimagined camper portal, more camp content on channels youth use, and a backpack care package program to ensure every participant had what they needed to get the most out of their experience.
What did Tims eCamp look like for participants? eCampers benefited from two weeks of daily, live programming with their cabinmates, enjoying four activities a day. They learned new skills, like cooking and photography, while building their sense of self in a safe and supportive community. They also participated in eCamp-wide games – like trivia nights, talent shows, and escape rooms – designed to develop their teamwork skills and confidence.
Beyond their two weeks of live programming, eCampers also had access to weekly programs, games, and resources throughout the summer, such as the Compass, a camper-only social media platform designed to foster strong relationships across the eCamp community.
Tim’s eCamp and virtual engagement by the numbers
- 1334 youth attended eCamp sessions focused on creating a safe and supportive community, learning new skills, and engaging in fun camp-wide games
- 4745 backpacks filled with stickers, gift cards, summer journals, notes from camp staff, camp games and an Amazon Echo Dot delivered to participants to drive engagement and interest in eCamp
- 3941 personal outreach phone calls to campers and families for ongoing communication, support, and engagement
- Social media engagement: 21,940 views on TikTok, 4855 likes on Instagram, 70% increase in social media followers
- 91% of youth surveyed felt eCamp allowed them to connect with positive, supportive, and caring adults
- 88% of youth surveyed felt eCamp was an environment where they were encouraged to try new things
- 83% of youth surveyed felt eCamp empowered them to take the lead within a group.
“All the counsellors and cabin mates were very supportive and funny...we had some great talks that made us laugh and cry and debate over and I’m going to forever miss them”
-Tims eCamper, 2021
“eCamp provided a safe space for me this summer and I was able to express emotion, share feelings, engage with my group and talk together.”
-Tims eCamper, 2021
“Receiving the backpack from camp meant so much to me! Opening the backpack was so exciting to see what was going to be included inside.”
-Tims eCamper, 2021
- 7476 eCamp hours completed by youth
- 3331 total counsellor-facilitated sessions throughout the summer including 2673 small group activities: cabin connections, iChoices, skill builders
- 464 campers enabled to fully participate in our virtual programming, by providing technology and services to help families overcome barriers of access and accessibility at no cost
- 139 staff were hired to support all seven regions of eCamp
Here’s what our campers and families had to say about our first year of eCamp
“I'm really touched by what [Tims Camps] is doing! Not only around [providing devices to campers who need it], but for every camper. You are putting in so much effort! I thank you from the bottom of my heart!”
–Tims eCamper, 2020
“My husband and I first want to acknowledge all the hard work the Tim Hortons Foundation has put into our child. My daughter has benefited from it more than you could ever imagine. Her depression has decreased, while her self-confidence, leadership, community volunteerism and hope for the future has increased. She has blossomed into a wonderful young woman, and you had a big part to play in that. Thanks so much.”
– Lori and Graeme, parents of a Tims eCamper, 2020
“I don’t know how often you are told this, but with tears in my eyes I want you to know that I am so thankful for the extra effort your team has constantly put into making my daughters experience rewarding and for providing her with a device and data to connect to Tims eCamp this summer. Thank you really isn’t even close to being enough!
- Carlene and Gary, parents of a Tims eCamper, 2020
Camp in a Box
When Tims eCamp wrapped up at the end of August, our team quickly shifted to reimagine our school program knowing that we wouldn’t be able to bring schools to camp. We decided to bring the camp spirit to schools through “Camp in a Box.” These boxes were filled with teacher-ready lesson plans for social and emotional learning, physically distant camp games for both in-person and remote learning settings, Kids Help Phone and mental wellness support resources, materials to run camp-favourite teambuilding exercises, learning reflection journals, teacher appreciation gifts and much more! We reached 4,100 students in 75 schools in our initial Camp in a Box outreach during Fall 2020 and Camp in a Box outreach grew significantly as the pandemic continued to impact school operating calendars.
|Schools Supported||Number of Students Reached|
Modified School Program
We modified our School Program to adhere to COVID-19 safety protocols and engage youth in structured activities, both in-person and remotely. We offered five virtual classes, our staff attended five local schools to bring live programming to 325 students, and we welcomed 390 students from 12 schools to Tim Hortons Onondaga Farms for day-use camp programming!
2021 Program Costs:
|Tims e2021 Program||2,705,434|
|Camp Operations (site/facility maintenance)||9,409,929|
|Management and Administration||2,038,281|
Note: The above represents costs from the Canadian Foundation, not a consolidated view.
Giving Back to Our Communities
2020 and 2021 were challenging years for the youth we serve and the communities where we operate. In the spirit of community, our teams volunteered their time and energy to provide meaningful support to others:
- We donated 46,079 pounds of food to 11 food banks in communities surrounding Tims Camps.
- We provided more than 5,000 hours of service at 19 local community organizations, including food banks, meals on wheels, soup kitchens, and shelters.
- We contributed cleaning products and personal protective equipment, including 735 medical gowns, 1,200 N95 masks, and 4,050 surgical gloves, to local hospitals.
- Our camp teams provided support to 22 organizations
- Our team at Tim Horton Children’s Camp in Nova Scotia prepared 6,922 breakfasts for the local Tatamagouche Breakfast Program.
- We donated 2,220lbs of produce from the Onondaga Farms community garden and greenhouse to the Brantford Food Bank.
- Our Quyon team donated 4,000 meals for members of the larger Pontiac community.