Brigadoon Village set to open in August
A multimillion-dollar camp to help young people with chronic illness is just a few months away from opening in the Annapolis Valley.
Brigadoon Village is being built in Aylesford Lake on 40 hectares of land being licensed from Nova Scotia Power.
More than $7.5 million has been raised, including corporate support in the form of $90,000 worth of windows. The Brigadoon Children's Camp Society still hopes to raise another $500,000 to offset operating costs.
"It's for those chronic-illness groups that have programs or summer camps or weekend programs but it's also for those that have nothing," said David McKeage, the executive director of the society.
"We're here to help develop programs with our partners to address those needs and it's a Maritime-wide focus."
The concept of Brigadoon Village is to try and provide a place for children to explore and get away from the stress of their daily lives.
For children and youth with a chronic illness or conditions, the society says, opportunities for self-discovery can be limited by definitions of disease, treatments, conditions and stereotypes.
"Just normal summer camp stuff, take an extraordinary life and give it some normalcy. That's really the core of it and I guess if there's a nugget to that core, it would be fun," said McKeage.
One obstacle in constructing the village was to put in a road to reach the remote parcel of land in Kings County. The 1.6-kilometre long road and a bridge cost $1 million to install.
Herman Plehn, who works for Roscoe Construction, said the project has had its challenges.
"It's a very rocky, rough site, wet site, and we had a hard winter," he said. "We had a lot of snow up here."
McKeage said the first phase of construction should be complete by the time the camp is due to open in August.
"We're just focusing on that first child and family coming on site and we're looking forward to many, many, many years — decades — of sustainability and program development and it's exhilarating, it's exciting."