Saturday, July 23, 2011

Camp Jake is around the corner!

We are SO thrilled about the progress being made on CAMP JAKE! For those who may have missed this exciting news, The Red Thread Promise is starting a camp, Camp Jake Richard, as a summer retreat for the orphans at St. Vincent’s Center for Handicapped Children in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. Campers will enjoy respite from the intense Haitian heat in a unique, fun-filled learning environment brimming with new activities and memorable experiences for these extraordinary children.

Tom, Camp Director, and Jake

Tom has volunteered countless hours to ensure that the inaugural year of Camp Jake is a success: from scouting, selecting and securing an appropriate location for children with disabilities, to planning activities, to creating a budget and fundraising, to finding the volunteers. We plan to provide a one-of-a-kind experience for these kids.

Thirty-three students will attend the camp which will be located at Kaliko Beach, Haiti. Driving 1.5 hours north by bus, the camp site feels worlds away from the children’s mundane daily existence in the heart of the poorest country in the Western Hemisphere.

A volunteer staff of energetic American youth counselors will provide an incredible week of transforming disability into ability. Volunteers include artists, musicians, cooks, and mentors to provide the children with a wide variety of fun and exciting learning opportunities. Medical professionals will be on hand to provide medical evaluations and to teach the children basic hygiene skills.

Camp Jake Richard is designed to remove physical and emotional barriers, giving the children an opportunity to engage in:
  • Creative arts, such as sculpting, painting, music, sewing, and jewelry making, which will be both fun and therapeutic. These activities will also teach valuable skills that may enable career opportunities later in life.
  • Physical outlets including sports, aquatics, dancing, and even a special Olympics designed to develop their self confidence.
  • Social activities including cooking, dancing, storytelling, and cultural exchanges between the children and the counselors.
Campers will be encouraged to wholly express themselves physically and emotionally. They will have the opportunity to explore life in ways that will broaden their horizons, creating life-long memories.

Tom and Kathy recently made a presentation to Rotary Youth Leadership in the New Orleans area. Sixty high school age youth drilled the presenters with questions about St. Vincent's Center, the students and how they can help at Camp Jake this year and in summers to come. To top it off, they presented TRTP with a check for $7800 toward this year's camp!

As the camp dates draw closer, we continue to encourage our friends and donors to say "I PROMISE" to support Camp Jake and the children from St. Vincent's. Giving levels are greatly varied to meet each donor's needs:
  • $25, $50, $75, $100 or any denomination you choose are welcome!
  • Sponsor an orphan for $500
  • Sponsor a counselor for $750
  • Become a t-shirt sponsor for $1500
For your convenience, a PayPal button can be found on the sidebar or checks can be sent to The Red Thread Promise, 4027 Dauphine Street, New Orleans, LA 70117. Kindly write “Camp Jake” in the memo line.

When you send a donation in support of Camp Jake Richard, you do more than send money—you send hope to a Haitian child with a disability. Please join The Red Thread Promise in fulfilling our mission to improve the lives of special needs children.

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