As Spring has finally sprung in the metro Atlanta area, we are already well underway in preparation for this year's Beach Themed Summer Camp 2015, starting July 4th!
Meanwhile, all those behind the scenes activities are happening too. This year we've welcomed many new faces to our strong Board of Directors team, and we're checking off our list of strategic goals to facilitate growth and partnerships. Much of our success in new recruitment this year is thanks to a new LinkedIn Partnership through their Volunteer Marketplace, which is a new and free service to a small charity like ours! This was a game-changer for us!
With our focused team, we've recently unveild our "new look" with our now 21st century website! We're very proud of the way it's turned out and for all the collaboration and work that went into it, although, no website project is ever complete. This iteration represents only "phase 1" with several more additions in the works.
Last month's outting brought our campers of all ages to Escalade Rock Climbing Gym for some personal and group challenges. It's this kind of contininuity that proves to our campers that they are important and that we're a stable presence for them as they grow and mature. For many of our campers, Camp Horizon is the only stable thing in their lives.
We know that consistency and genuine support, like that provided through our year-round programs, help to offset some of the negative aspects that a history of abuse and neglect confer. But there are lifetime effects that develop and hinder a child's emotional, mental, and physical health too. You can check out Dr. Nadine Burke Harris's TED Talk to hear her explain how stress negatively affects a child's development. Children who suffer abuse and neglect, who've suffered a trauma, are different than other children. Their brains and neurological systems learn to respond differently to stress, for instance. Keeping this in mind, we at Camp Horizon feel even more emboldened in our mission to bring love, respect, and nuturing guidance to kids who need it most, making a lifetime's difference, slowly, one child at a time.
As I look at my calendar, we've got our next Leadership Development Program teen retreat coming up in April, a casual and spunky fundraiser in May, our annual "Famly Reunion" for all alumni campers, volunteers, staff, and donors, and of course, our Summer Camp week kick-off on July 4th! (I can't wait!)
Thank you for your support and commitment to our Camp Horizon campers, a group who started out in life with the deck stacked very much against them. With our continued investment in their futures, we aim to imrpove their potential for success and even -- it's a lofty goal -- help mitigate or even prevent some long-term mental, psychological and physical problems.
YOU help to make the magic possible!