It's time to seed the lawn for dozens of playing campers, time to check all the fenceposts and make sure the fence is secure, time to buy new play equipment and art supplies, time to regrade our driveway that will have a hundred cars going up and down it for drop off and pick up. This is also is the time of year that I question if I have it in me to give up all that I do to make Camp Wolf happen. In the end, when the campers muddy feet trek through my house, or paint covered hands make permanent marks on my doors and furniture, I laugh because I know I am doing exactly what I am supposed to be doing.
I was talking to one of my Camp Moms earlier and she said, "Don't be afraid to tell your story." I guess I just always assume that everyone knows but after a big misunderstand today, I will take the time to tell those new to Camp Wolf the story that is behind why I do what I do. I started Camp Wolf because my oldest was immune deficient when she was younger and not able to have the "normal" school and camp experiences that other kids had. Going to Summer Camp meant the world to me. My memories of Camp as a child are my most cherished. Finding out that my daughter, with all her food allergies and health issues, could not have the same experiences was not easy for me. So, I decided if she couldn't go to Camp, I would bring Camp to her. This mission led the start of Camp Wolf and what would become my passion project to bring the Arts to the children in our community.
What most people don't know, is that Camp Wolf is not a "money maker" for me. Camp Wolf is a passion project; a way to get kids off technology and learning to do things by hand. My mission is to empower kids and help them learn about the arts and know that they are capable of whatever they put their minds to. There are no limits here and my Campers will tell you that I always tell them "There is no wrong way to do art!" Here they learn to explore, try things they have never done and learn life long skills.
I could never repay all that my husband and I have put into our home and property to make these Camps happen. I would have to at least double the costs if I expected a monetary return. I know people don't understand that, as I often get comments like, " business is good" and such. I just laugh. My business is kids future and mentorship, so yes that is great! The $13,000 I spent on the A-Frame alone would take years of Camps to pay off. My basement craft room would probably make a sweet teen hang out for the children that live in this home, but instead it holds sewing tables and projects tables for the campers. It holds the promise of teaching a bevy of Arts and hopefully the potential to inspire minds!
When children can not afford the tuition, I do not turn them away. I provide "scholarships" out of my own funds and even pass on materials and supplies to keep them creating at home. I am reaching out to the Camp Wolf Community in hopes that together, we can pull together funds to provide scholarships once again to some really amazing children!!! These kids, and their parents, are going through unimaginable things and my hope is to continue to provide them with a safe, fun environment in which to forgot about things and just BE KIDS!!!
Please consider donating. Every $ matters so no amount is too small. Together we can help these kiddos have a great summer!!!