WRYA introduces teens to the world of volunteering. Youth volunteer 200 plus hours for the city of White Rock, its councilors, chamber of commerce, community service organizations, service clubs and local business; seeing firsthand how the infrastructures of a community intersect. During their 18-month term they acquire valuable skills: public speaking, table talk, protocol, etiquette, team building, trust, reliability, commitment, and networking. Travel throughout BC affords opportunities to go to know the province and its people. Near to the end of their term, the group undertakes their own community project from conception to execution. Our hope is that as the youths grow to adulthood, they will become community-minded leaders.
White Rock Youth Ambassadors has been existence for over 50 years. Although its roots were in a summer seaside beauty pageant, it has evolved to a non-profit, community driven, volunteer orientated program. A dozen or so candidates apprentice for six months, competing with a fashion show, talent and creativity evening, public speaking events, a personal interview, a general knowledge exam on their community and an essay about a local landmark. A panel of judges assesses them. Their facilitators grade them on attendance, attitude and volunteerism. At the annual awards’ gala, one is selected in a leadership role as Miss White Rock assisted by two princesses or principle ambassador, a friendship ambassador and a team of youth ambassadors (male and female). Now the hard work really begins as they spend hundreds of hours working for the city ofWhite Rock, at Spirit of the Sea Festival, the Torchlight Parade, Canada Day, Remembrance Day, the Regatta, the lighting of the Historic Pier at Christmas, a Vintage Affair, the Peace Arch Hospital Gala, etc. They represent White Rock throughout the province as they travel to various cities for their festivities. As well, they continue to work with their sponsors (who are local business and service clubs) throughout their year.
At the Annual Awards Gala the Royalty – Miss White Rock, two Princesses and/or Principle Ambassador and a Friendship Ambassador, who together represent the city and act in “official “ roles during their term, are selected. They, along with the Ambassador Team continue to attend events at local and out of town occasions. The Ambassadors travel chaperoned to other pageants and special festivals, promoting White Rock. The youth reliably have shared how the year’s experience enriched their view of the world and people, positively impacting their future life. The judges, city officials and program facilitators have provided positive feedback on their observations on the changes in the young women’s maturity and self-confidence.
A volunteer committee of former Royalty, Ambassadors, parents, and community leaders runs the program. It is entirely non-profit operating on a modest budget from donations and fundraising. The expenses are often cost recovery and always directly related to the programming and ambassador functions. A significant investment of time and in-kind assistance ensures that participation is the core philosophy of the White Rock Youth Ambassador Program
Each year a community project is undertaken by the team. They choose the project and execute it from start to finish.
For more information on the White Rock Youth Ambassadors program, please contact Debbie or Donna via the information on the Contact Page