The Future of Camp Nazarene
Though we love what we do, we recognize the need to do more. Camp Nazarene currently offers four weekly sessions and two bi-weekly sessions each season. Enrollment to capacity allows us to serve 390 children in our summer program. We host a one-day boys and girls retreat at the start of each summer; a weekend teen retreat each autumn; and a myriad of other family focused events throughout the year. Still there is so much more that must be done.
Each summer we encounter the ever-growing needs of children and families. Single parents need respite from the demands of raising children alone. Parental drug addictions, incarcerations, and sometimes death leave many children to be raised by grandparents. These grandparents often need assistance with keeping up with the many demands of raising children in our fast-paced, technologically advanced society. Attempts to educate children are often lost to the effects of drug related violence, and other threats to survival, that keep our children distracted and fearful. Meanwhile, the looming effects of poverty and despair are allowed to grow with reckless abandon.
We see the needs. We feel the pain. But the demands of today’s families far exceed our capacity for service. If we are to rise to the challenge we must broaden our horizons. We can no longer limit our services to summer encampments and periodic retreats. Camp Nazarene must operate year round. We are looking to implement programs that address issues of teenage sexual activity; reunification of families after the release of the parent(s) from prison, education to career services that promote college enrollment and/or job retention among high school graduates; addictions counseling; literacy; parenting; domestic violence and so much more.
Toward this end, we have established an annual giving campaign to solicit donations from concerned citizens, profit-bearing organizations with a social conscience, and other conscientious benefactors. We are in the midst of capital improvement efforts that are designed to expand camping services via the building of a year round retreat and conference center. We look to offer cultural and artistic youth development activities; full-scale educational enhancement services; and comprehensive family services.