Every day, I get at least one new camper application in my inbox that tells another story of how a child's world was torn apart by the death of a parent or sibling. Each summer, I spend 3 weeks with those campers, hearing the intimate details of their grief and memories and regrets. For many of them, it's the only time they get to do that all year long. Can you imagine bottling all of that heaviness up? Can you imagine doing it as a 10-year old? We're giving kids the opportunity to open up that bottle and start healing. We're giving them a place to share, feel supported, play basketball, eat s'mores, and get spoiled rotten by our unbelievable volunteers. We're giving them the best week of their year. We know because they tell us.
Experience Camps are one-week camps for boys and girls who have experienced the death of a parent, sibling, or primary caregiver. It's a place where kids can laugh, cry, play, create, remember the person who died, or forget the grief that weighs them down. It's a place where they can feel "normal", because everyone there has been through something similar and understands what it's like to lose someone important to them. It's a home away from home. And just about everyone will tell you..."It's the best week of the year".