Volunteer Profile – Jason Quinton
How many camps have you attended?
Why do you volunteer for Feel the Magic®?
I don’t want young kids to go through grief and growing up feeling all alone like I had to, being the only person I knew who had lost multiple loved ones at an early age.
What is your favourite season and why?
Spring is my favourite Season, as it’s heartwarming to watch the kids open up and come out of their shells as they learn ways in which to deal with their emotions and grief.
What’s the best piece of advice you’ve heard about grief?
Understand that your grieving process is unique to you.
What inspires you about our campers?
Their wisdom beyond their years, their empathy towards others and just their sheer bravery.
A final note from Jason:
I lost my Dad at ten, Mum at 29, stepdad at 31, three of my grandparents early, and a great mate who was like a brother to me at 21 to suicide. Don’t take this the wrong way, as I’m not asking for sympathy, I’m more using it to explain where I’m going…
Especially as a younger kid, it can be a really hard time, as friends around you that haven’t experienced the loss of someone close like a parent, don’t really get why you’re sad a lot and why you can’t just get over it. You can really feel alone and different to others around you in the schoolyard as a youngster. Growing up I used to get told to relax and stop taking things so seriously, but once you’ve lost someone like a parent so young, things are just not the same and neither are you. Unfortunately it can shape you as a kid, leaving you with emotional, anger and confidence issues that can last a lifetime, especially if left without the right help.
I didn’t know what to expect for my first Camp and how it would all work. What I truly didn’t expect to see was so much change in the kids over such a short time and it was beautiful to see them open up as the sessions progressed. Also what I didn’t expect was that it would make me confront things in myself I have pushed away for a long time. I sat at home after my first Camp almost feeling guilty that I had taken away so much inside myself when I was there to give to others. I just want to give a huge thanks to every single person that makes Camp what it is.
I truly see how much Camp Magic has the ability to transform kids lives, giving them healing, courage, confidence and community, and it also inadvertently offers so much healing for the adults that we don’t otherwise have the opportunity to do. It takes the kids from feeling being all alone at home in their grief and puts them around 120+ other people who are all going through the same kinds of things as them and this lets them realise they are not alone and gives them community.
I feel so so lucky to have been fortunate enough to go on these Camps and if I have been able to make even one of the Campers smile and leave some lasting good, it’s all worth it. I met some truly amazing big hearted people and feel grateful to be able to do this with them all.