British Columbia

Wizard-filled quests of D&D empower Prince Rupert B.C. girls

'We're making these kids be heroes, and I think the world needs more heroes'


Rob Gruber sits at the head of the table leading the quest during a session of the "Heroes of Hawethorne" Dungeons & Dragons campaign for kids. These events are attracting more girls and offers an experience that teaches leadership and team building skills to growing minds. (Ash Kelly/CBC)


Prince Rupert B.C. girls are embracing the Dungeons and Dragons world of wizards, elves and quests against evil, finding empowerment in the cozy basement of a local gaming shop.

Weekly Dungeons and Dragons gatherings have attracted up to 100 young gamers at a time, and the girls outnumber the boys these days.

At a recent event six of the eight seats at the table were filled by girls between the ages of five and 13 during the "Heroes of Hawethorne" Dungeons & Dragons campaign for kids.

Girls better than boys

"I'll be honest, I think the girls at this age are better players than the boys," said Rob Gruber, owner of Good Times.

"They have a real team mentality and a real attachment to their characters. They work really well together and they really want to see everybody succeed," said Gruber.

The shop runs the Gamer Girls camp, which is lead by 17-year-old Olivia Godin who has worked at the store for four years.

Godin hopes to become an elementary school teacher in the future and enjoys the chance to help girls discover themselves through the classic role playing game.

"I love getting to be that part of their life, or be someone positive for them that can teach them things, whether it's as simple as their math addition or if it's life decisions, I like making sure that they know there's someone there for them," she said.

"They really learn the support, the friendship, they're very honourable. Things that you can't really learn in school, they tend to learn here. A lot of them, you'll see them sacrifice themselves, their characters, they'll jump in, they'll take the hit," she said.

"We always play the good guys with the kids," said Gruber, who regularly leads the game, taking the kids on quests to defend the villagers and save the prince or princess.

"We're making these kids be heroes, and I think the world needs more heroes."

With files from the CBC's Daybreak North.

To hear the full interview listen to audio labelled Dungeons and Dragons offers quest of empowerment for young girls.

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