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NFL, CFL players coaching Kelowna youth football charity camp

The Make It Happen Football Camp runs on June 23 and 24
(Nolan Ulm/Submitted)

A Division one football player is giving back to the community that helped him become the man he is today with a football camp for Okanagan youth.

The Kelowna-made Eastern Washington Eagles wide receiver and founder of Camp Make it Happen, Nolan Ulm, has created a not-for-profit camp that will teach youth more than just how to catch a football.

He has recruited a roster of twenty current and retired Division one, CFL and NFL players to coach the Make It Happen Football Camp on June 23 and 24. While the young athletes will be put through drills and exercises, they will also be given the opportunity to build connections and learn life lessons from the accomplished coaches.

In an interview with Capital News Ulm said that he is excited to bring his teammates, competitors and idols up to Canada to share their expertise with the next generation of football stars.

“If we don’t continue to give back, we won’t have great players to represent Canadian football.”

Ulm grew up in subsidized housing in Kelowna with a single mother who worked multiple jobs to make ends meet.

At the age of seven, Ulm was given the opportunity to attend a football camp and still remembers everything about the experience, from not catching a single pass, to the fun he had and the lessons he learned both on and off the field.

“It inspired me to really go and do great things.”

After high school, Ulm made the Eastern Washington Eagles University team as a wide receiver. He hopes to share what he has learned through his journey as a young adult with youth, to help them become the best versions of themselves possible.

All proceeds from the not-for-profit camp will be donated to Mamas for Mamas, an organization that supports low-income mothers and caregivers, and the Karis Society. Ulm said that Karis is a charity that assisted his family when he was young and that the organization allowed him to have experiences that wouldn’t have otherwise been possible.

Now, it is Ulm’s mission to give back to the people, organizations and places that were instrumental in helping him become the successful man and football player that he is today.

Kelowna has not had a large football camp for the past few years and Ulm said “it’s time to bring it back.”

The developmental football camp is intended for athletes between the ages of 13 and 18. Youth who are unable to afford the registration fees are asked to email For more information, to see the coaching roster and to register visit

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Jacqueline Gelineau

About the Author: Jacqueline Gelineau

I'm a reporter in the beginning stages of my career. I joined the team at Capital News in November 2021...
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