BY Erin Pfaeffle
School: Senior at Wood River High School
Siblings: Younger sister Natalie, 13
Pets: Kobe the Cockatiel
Role: Camp Counselor
Edwin Garcia believes that “anyone can help anybody at anytime, no matter how big the issue.” When he was in 6th grade, Edwin attended the Blaine County School District’s Environmental Camp and it had such a positive impact on his life that he decided to pay it back (and forward) by being a counselor there during his junior and senior years. It’s hard not to notice Edwin’s patient and caring nature.
How did you get into being a camp counselor?
My counselor when I was at camp was really cool, really nice. He gave me a different way to look at things. He showed me how to be helpful to others and how to show other kids not to look at things as being so dull or boring. I discovered that I could help younger students succeed and become better people.
What are your greatest achievements so far?
Completing my Senior Project, I made and designed a long (skate) board. I’m also very proud that I have pushed through so many struggles in life, especially with family. I try to be someone my sister can look up to by being a great brother and a great person. Coping with personal struggles helped me open my eyes and realize I needed to change and be someone my sister could look up to. I had to change for myself, but to also help my family stay in a positive place.
What are the keys to being a good counselor?
Patience, first of all, and a willingness to help, to be caring, kind and not just be an adult figure, but someone the kids can have fun with. Being a good friend who the kids can trust and be honest with.
Why is the Wood River Valley a good place for your skills & passions?
There are so many things to do here, like the Idaho Drug Free Youth program. It’s a great way to help kids get their minds off of things, a great way to spend time with other people, with lots of fun activities.
Any tips for others interested in science or Environmental Camp?
Sometimes kids just need that one person to be their friend, to push them through, when they are sad or depressed. It doesn’t have to be family. It can be anyone.
Who is your biggest influence?
My mother. She has been through so much and has the will and strength to push forward and focus on the positive in life. She is strong and independent and pushes my sister and me to always do our best.
What’s your favorite flavor ice cream?
Cookies and Cream
What’s your favorite “kids” meal?
I love food—that’s hard! If I had to choose, it would be tamales, the sweet, sugary ones.
What’s your motto?
“Everyone dies, but not everyone lives.”
Do you participate in any sports?
I play basketball for Wood River High School and pick-up soccer and football.
Petey by Ben Mikaelsen
Place you’d most like to visit?