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By 12 and 10, Aiden and Evan stopped expecting summers of family fun. They have been in foster care for several years and keep their expectations low. So they were thrilled to hear that they are going to camp for a week this year and that they are going together. The trip to Camp Gilmont in Gilmer, Texas is still a month away but they are excited to take part in archery, canoeing, crafts and sports. They’ll get to be stereotypical kids at summer camp, making memories and meeting new friends.
This gift of summer fun was granted by Prairie Valley Legacy Committee of First Presbyterian Church in Fort Worth. The committee, a longtime supporter of the kids and client families of PCHAS, set aside $10,000 in camp scholarships. This year’s award, in collaboration with Grace Presbytery, makes it possible for a dozen residents from the Foster Care Village in Itasca to enjoy nature activities and camaraderie. It also provides a high point for two youngsters in our Child and Family Program, which stabilizes families during a crisis, and four working mothers in our Single Parent Family Program, who will attend camp with their children. Gilmont’s mission is to be a safe, sacred space where all are invited to grow closer to God, creation, others and themselves. Rev. Kenny Rigoulot, a camp director, shares, “We have seen a lot of evidence that kids need camp, perhaps now more than ever. Spending time in nature with a safe and loving community and learning to work as a team, while also practicing independence, are just a few benefits of a week away at camp.”
In San Antonio, 20 children and young adults are also looking forward to summer camp. Presbyterian Mo-Ranch Assembly has granted scholarships to children being raised by single parents and to young adults who are becoming independent. Most of these clients have been coping with emotional and financial burdens for years. At Mo-Ranch, they will unwind with swimming, a ropes course and arts and crafts. They will grow in their faith and build friendships.
“These are great opportunities for our clients,” says Senior Development Officer Kathy Dodson. “We’re grateful to receive these scholarships because summer camp can be rejuvenating. The campers unplug from technology, enjoy the outdoors and really share quality time with friends and family.”
PCHAS welcomes support in many forms: camp scholarships, annuities, endowments, in-kind gifts and other contributions. Contact your development officer to give safety, love and healing to children and families in need.
Photos courtesy of Camp Gilmont.