Camp can make a difference in the life of a child - and you can help

andamom.com

© Jules
July 30th, 2008

Camp can make a difference in the life of a child - and you can help By Jules andamom.com July 30th, 2008

On Sunday, we took my daughter to camp. I've been sending her to day or sleepaway camps since she was quite small. I used the camps as a form of day care until a few years ago - oh really who am I kidding, I still basically do! I have found that a camp can provide even a teenager with enriching activities that keep the teen out of trouble. Kids can discover new hobbies, become one with nature, and most importantly realize that that everyone is fundamentally the same. While not all camps are good, there are enough day and sleepaway camps that are good - parents/guardians should have a wide selection. I could go on to talk about my daughter's experience, and I may do that in the coming weeks, but right now I'd like to comment on making the camp experience a reality for other children.

The fact is that many parents would like to give their children the camp experience. Yet, camp isn't free - and many camps are quite costly. I've seen that providing children with experiences they might not otherwise have is a way to start equalizing social inequities in their parent's generation.
Kids who would otherwise sit at home (many in front of the television) are taken out of their element and provided with activities to stretch their imaginations, challenge their bodies, and cause them to interact with people and their environment. Further, for some kids, summer is a period of frustration because their parents/guardians who still need to work (work is year round, but kids are out of school for a few months) realize that they need to provide them with not only activities but food as well (disadvantaged youth may qualify for reduced price or free lunch).

The great thing is that you can make a difference in the life of a child by sponsoring or helping to sponsor one or more children to attend camp. Most camps take contributions for funds set up to sponsor those who cannot pay.
I'd suggest, researching a camp you like and finding out what you can do to help. Many camps also gladly accept goods that can be used for craft projects.

Here are a few other options for those of you who are looking for specific
organizations:

1) Contact your local YMCA or YWCA - as most have camps.

2) Check out your library, grocery store, museum, zoo, local school, religious organization, or playground for notices/flyers about camps.

3) Ask about funding at the place where your child attends camp.

4) Locate camps online: ACA Camps, KidsCamps.com