Sep 1, 2021

Summer Camp was a huge success!

We were able to have an in-person summer camp this year!  The youth and volunteers were excited to be back together!  

We were able to welcome back 20 kids and approximately 35 volunteers to summer camp.  The youth were provided with a warm, loving and supportive environment, enjoying many of the activities and programs.  Of the 20 approximately 7 were graduating from summer camp and moving to our Leadership Development Program.  Those 7 completed their rock wall ceremony taking them to new heights. 

For many of our foster youth, participating in the activities and camp with Camp Horizon is a highlight as well as offers them many opportunities they would not experience.  They report feeling loved and supported while being able to enjoy the fun activities as well as teaching sessions.

Camp Horizon is now focusing on the remainder of our annual programming, the Leadership Development weekend and holiday program for the 2021 year. 

Thank you for the support!  Your support has helped us as we continue to serve our foster youth, meeting their needs.

May 11, 2021

In-person Summer Camp is Back!

With May being National Foster Care Awareness Month it was great for us to learn and share we are able to have our much needed and desired in-person summer camp.  Often, youth in the foster care system have lived through multiple traumas and disruptive events by the time they begin their transition to adulthood. This can include abuse and/or neglect, multiple foster home placements, lack of continuity in education, and an array of losses of relationships (e.g., friends, family, and/or siblings). Their life experiences can create additional problems resulting in mental illness, substance abuse problems, unemployment, homelessness, and a lack of confidence. These challenges impact the emotional and social development of foster care youth as they transition into adulthood.

Camp Horizon was started in 1982 with the purpose to provide foster youth a supportive and caring environment while giving them the invaluable opportunity to participate in a sleepaway camp. Our program works with 8 - 24 year-olds and is dedicated to preparing our youth with the skills and relationships they will need to manage the process of aging out of foster care. Overcoming the effects of childhood abuse and/or neglect is a life-long process, but Camp Horizon's one-to-one mentor matching program, intentional life skills lessons, loyal volunteers, and family-like environment, help our campers by addressing the challenges and allowing them to consistently beat the dismal odds.  Youth who are transitioning to adulthood need to have well-developed self-esteem and self-efficacy skills that equip them to manage relationships in multiple contexts, including education and employment settings, as well as with friends and family members. As research highlights, the importance of positive, supportive relationships will improve a foster youth’s trajectory. Ideally, foster youth should have connections to caring adults who can provide support, including helping them access necessary resources and services. 

To have in-person summer camp return has been exciting and great news for our youth!  Additionally, it's exciting to us as we understand the importance of a consistent supportive adult in a foster youth's life and how this support inevitably helps by reducing the number of foster care placement changes, increasing positive behavior, supporting the youth as they exit care, as well as increasing academic achievement.

Thank you for the support of Camp Horizon as we strive to mitigate the challenges our youth face and change the trajectory of their lives.  Because of you, many of our youth feel supported and loved, better able to handle emotions, and receive the appropriate skills needed to be successful as an adult.  Stay tuned for pictures from this year's camp!

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Jan 21, 2021

Thank You-What Has Happened at Camp Horizon

This year has been a difficult and challenging year for many of us.  Due to the pandemic, Camp Horizon had to look at different ways to meet the needs of our youth.  As research highlights, the pandemic has been especially challenging for foster youth as they have experienced the trauma of isolation, separation and feelings of inadequacy.  The pandemic can intensify those feelings for foster youth making it very traumatic and difficult to cope.  So while we were not able to do the in-person summer camp and other in-person activities, we were able to adjust to ensure we continued to meet the emotional and physical needs of our foster youth.  We adjusted our in-person summer camp to a virtual summer camp.  Prior to our virtual sessions, we mailed activites and projects to our youth to complete during the session.  Additionally, we held meaningful crucial conversations during these sessions to help them cope with the challenges of the pandemic.  Additionally, we provided the youth and families with a safe and socially distant Halloween event, opportunity to take family photos and Holiday gifts.   

Our youth and families were very appreciative of the on-going support provided them during these difficult times.  Many expressed the support the feel from Camp Horizon is what they hold on to in the ever-changing times.  Without the supporters and donors, we would not be able to provide this consistent, supportive, and loving environment that the youth yearn for.  You have helped us to continue providing supportive services during the pandemic as well as lay a foundation for our future work.  Thank you again for all you have done to help our mission of working to restore dignity and hope to children, teens, and young adults — empowering them to make good decisions and lead healthy productive lives.

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