What is Real Life Kids Camp
Real Life Kids Camp was started with the purpose of making a relational investment in youth of our community who live in challenging environments. We encourage, strengthen, and invest—all to give them hope!
Where do we serve?
Compassion Zones – We prioritize neighborhoods and housing communities within high poverty areas, bringing the camp experience to their location. Bringing the camp to the neighborhood reduces the cost of attendance and so encourages higher participation from those who need the camp the most. Additionally, by focusing on a location, it allows for the potential of longer-term investment in students who reside there.
What do we do?
The camp includes 3-5 consecutive days of nightly activities for youth and their families. The programming of games, crafts, lessons, and music is aimed at students ages 5-12, but can easily be adapted and used with teens.
A free dinner, served from an 18-foot BBQ Trailer provides a local spectacle, increasing interest and consistent participation.
A spiritual theme is introduced each night which develops the mental-emotional resources available to youth which gives them hope that they can succeed.
Who is involved?
Staffing – The camp is staffed by volunteers who spend 75% of the time in small groups to foster relational connection. Volunteers come from churches, partner organizations, and as much as possible the residents of the neighborhood which may include parents, teens, and other residents. A camp director facilitates the organization and preparation of the camp experience.
When are the camps?
The week-long camps are held during the summer. We also host one-day camp activities throughout the year
What is the impact?
We found the response to be overwhelmingly positive as noted by the energy of the students and their consistent attendance. The students always comment on having a really fun time, but also more significantly, feeling loved, noticed, encouraged, and filled with hope.