Well, the second camp is here and it feels like we just said goodbye to the first set of campers in May. We have campers from six different states this time around. Kids will be coming in from Florida, Ohio, Texas, Arkansas, Maryland, and North Carolina! As I write this, everybody is on the road or in the air, headed our way. I cannot wait to meet them all.
Last camp, I listened to Coach Jeff talk to us about what service means to him. His words really resonated with me, and I want to share them with the incoming kids.
To him, service is about putting another individual's needs before your own. This week, each and every camper's needs is greater than all of own. We are here to make their experience one of the best that they have ever experienced in their life.
We see service every day in our life. At the Cal Ripken, Sr. Foundation, we are lucky to work with so many great men and women who serve others every day—whether it's in law enforcement, the military, or as coaches and mentors to young people. We see their way of life and the way they put the needs of other individuals first. We try to emulate their way of life by imparting these values on the kids that we interact with. We pair our programs with service men and women so the kids we work with can see these values first hand.
A simple statement like the one that Coach Jeff shared with our group two weeks ago can have a profound impact on someone. My goal this week—with the help of our guests from the Montgomery County Police Department, US Marshals Service, and Carroll County Sheriff's Office, and all the other dedicated coaches and mentors joining us—is to instill the value of service in our campers. Through what they learn in our programs and at camp, these kids will hopefully go home and practice putting the needs of someone else before their own.
As our friends at Rachel’s Challenge taught me, “People will never know how far a little kindness can go.”
As I sit here and anxiously await 125 more excited kids, I remind myself to put their needs before my own—these kids are the reason we're here—and because this is my second camp and let’s face it, I’m no pro yet. Stay tuned for the mayhem that we have in store for these kids this week and do me a favor, show and talk about the importance of putting someone else’s needs before your own. Kids are always watching and learning from the examples they see around them. Together we can all become pros at serving others.
Until next time…Brooke OUT.