Send a Kid to Camp
Send a Kid to Camp. It's the most wonderful time of the year...no, really!
As we're heading into the holiday season once again, I'm filled with gratitude for the ways that my family and friends have been blessed over the course of the last year.
One of the things I'm most grateful for is how Camp Kum-Ba-Yah has become such a central part of our lives. It's a place where we gather with our community, a safe place for my children to explore nature and create lasting friendships, and a beacon of hope for all of us in what have been some troubled times.
We've been through some tough stuff this year—as a family, a city, a nation, and as members of the global community. Fear, uncertainty, violence, division, and a continuing sense of our core values being at risk have all marked 2018 in different ways. Disconnection from each other IRL (in real life) coupled with the pervasiveness of our phones, computers, tablets, watches, TVs, and video games has made it harder, it seems, to find a place to truly belong. Doesn't it seem like more and more of us are feeling like it's just easier—safer...less complicated—to stay inside in our own "secure" bubbles? This year, it's felt like a real obstacle to get out into the world and face what's going on out there.
When I've felt that way, it's been a gift for me to think about Camp Kum-Ba-Yah—the mission that has endured there for 68 years and how it thrives even now, in the face of all the challenges we face in the world. For nearly 7 decades, Camp Kum-Ba-Yah has represented the best in us: a place where ALL children are welcome; where friendship and trust don't acknowledge boundaries like skin color, zip code, or financial status; where cell phones and social networks are displaced by creeks and trails and real relationships developed face to face. It's an incredible, unlikely oasis in the middle of our city that gives me hope for our future together.
Our community has supported this vision and made it real for the last 68 years, and that fact is what has encouraged me more than any other in 2018. We have—our neighbors, friends, businesses, foundations, and other partners—come together to make Camp Kum-Ba-Yah possible because we all believe that it's important that there's a place for all children to share this experience in our city. We agree. We come together. At camp, we join hands in a circle that has no end.
So yes...the most wonderful time of the year! The time when we have a chance to make the vision real again for the next group of children. That's why my family will be sending a kid to camp through our gift to Camp Kum-Ba-Yah this holiday season. About 41% of summer campers at CKBY received full scholarship, and about 59% are on partial scholarship. Your donations make it possible for these children to experience the wonder of summer camp and the personal growth that comes with it. I hope you'll join us. We'll see you in the friendship circle.