PLYMOUTH – Two Pictou County residents who want to make people’s lives better have combined forces through their long-time friendship to start a youth self development organization called Dream Candy.
Deelle Hines and Camilla MacDonald have scheduled two six-week programs beginning in January at the Plymouth Community Centre, featuring an introduction to self-development.
“It’s a good way to ring in the New Year,” MacDonald said. “We’re really good friends. We have a shared interest in development practices. I’m an early childhood educator, and it’s always been my goal to help people be their best selves. There’s a saying that when students are ready teachers appear.”
One program for girls in grades 7 to 12 is scheduled for Wednesdays from 7 to 8:30 p.m. starting on January 25. The other will start on January 28 and will run from 10:30 a.m. to noon.
“This is a starting point,” Hines said. “We’d like to engage all ages and genders but we have to start somewhere.”
Twelve girls will be accepted in each group at a cost of $65 per person. Sponsorship for those needing it is available by contacting Hines or MacDonald at firstname.lastname@example.org for information about sponsoring a child.
“We want it to be accessible,” MacDonald said. “I feel like the community is ready for this.”
The program will include meditation, acceptance, communication, empowerment, finding purpose through passion, balancing fitness and nutrition, manifestation, gratitude, giving and receiving with grace, presence and self expression.
MacDonald grew up in Pictou County, while Hines moved to Pictou County from Port Hawkesbury eight years ago.
“It’s helping people see their potential,” said Hines, who has a background in fitness, nutrition and life coaching.
“Kids benefit a lot from it. Research shows they’re calmer, more empathetic and deal with self control better. Things are happening for you and not to you, so it’s such a good practice and you have to keep doing it. The lessons are so valuable. You use the bad things but you need to see the gifts hidden within them.”
MacDonald said she had an epiphany when her husband was in hospital and she was left to celebrate Christmas with their young son.
“My husband had a very serious illness over Christmas,” she said. “He had been ill a long time and I was having a baby who was experiencing his first Christmas. I felt no matter what goes on I can still give my son a great Christmas. I did have control of my attitudes and actions. It’s so much better than asking, ‘Why me?’”
Camilla MacDonald, left, and Deelle Hines demonstrate meditation that is part of a youth self development organization called Dream Candy they have jointly planned to launch in January. (Goodwin photo)