BUILDING FAITH CAMPER PROFILES TELL THE STORY OF HOW A WEEK AT CAMP CAN IMPACT A PERSON'S FAITH
ISSUE 3| SUMMER 2018
WHAT'S NEW FOR SUMMER 2018 Ride the Bus Thanks to a grant from the Wisconsin United Methodist Foundation, we are launching a pilot program to offer bus service to get campers safely to camp and back home again. In this first year, we will have a bus come from Green Bay in Week 2, another from Dodgeville in Week 3, and a third from Milwaukee in Week 6.Â Campers are already registering for this option.
Backpacking Camp Added For many years, Treehouse Camp has been the first camp experience to fill to capacity. We have a growing list of campers who have enjoyed this rustic, skillbuilding week of camp. Starting this summer, campers who are too old for Treehouses have an option to continue to build their confidence in wilderness survival. Backpack Journeys will have campers learning how to make decisions when filling their supplied frame backpack and then learning how to hike out to a location to setup their base camp. Campers will move locations through the week to different camping scenarios including a shipwreck and what to do if you get lost in the woods.
Effective Camp Research Project Since 2015, the Effective Camp Research Project has been the primary source of data about the outcomes for faith-based camps. For Summer 2018, both Pine Lake and Lake Lucerne will be research sites for this ongoing project. We will learn more about how our campers' lives are changed by their week at camp. We are looking forward to having the data we need to compare our effectiveness with other camps around the country.
ELIZABETH GAYHART IN HER OWN WORDS
If I had a quarter for every time someone asks me about camp I’d be rich. Last summer I went to camp, and I remember my friends going out of the water on one of those saucer boats. I remember perfectly the moment they stood up. They both fell backwards into the lake, and I sat in my saucer perfectly safe. Our laughter echoed across the lake creating memories in the sun. Camp isn't just camp; it's a journey that all of us should take. We are talking about a place where kids and people can go to connect, or reconnect, to God. We are talking about a place where we are reminded of God being in our hearts and loving us, with the company of lifelong friends. Donating to this camp helps kids grow up having a safe haven to go and worship God and feel welcomed by loved ones around them. I have to admit, before camp I always questioned my faith. I’d turn away from God because I believed that he wouldn't help me, that I wasn't worth being helped. But now that faith is a part of my life, I always talk to God, I am always asking for forgiveness, because I now see the love he has given me and the life I’ve been handed. I now see my faith as a big part of my life and I’m grateful for the opportunities I have because of it. Camp is an amazing experience that I am grateful to hold in my life. I'm grateful camp has guided me to the love and hand of God, and I hope other kids will be lucky enough to have the same thing happen to them. Because realizing the love of God and the importance of Christ is something that will forever be in my heart.
NEW DONORS IN 2017
TOTAL DONORS IN 2017
137,000 REASONS TO SHOUT THANK YOU
Donors gave $137,000 to WIUMCamps in 2017. What does that look like? You gave 73 campers a scholarship to attend camp. You gave three generations of campers ongoing safety and a connection to camp history with a new roof for the dining hall. You taught campers to appreciate and be curious about God's creation by adding a wetlands educational trail. You gave campers a good night's rest with new pillows in the Ridgewood cabins. You gave campers a new place to feel God's presence by building a new worship area. You modeled sustainable gardening by installing an aquaponic system in the Kuntz Environmental Education Center. You instigated laughter and memories with a sno-cone and popcorn machine.
Get to Know Spencer Iverson From nervous first-year camper to emerging leader
When Spencer first came to camp, he had a lot of "worries." If his bedtime routine was disturbed, he struggled to feel safe enough to sleep. It made sleepovers almost impossible. It made his family nervous about coming to camp. "The counselors were really great about listening to our concerns and learning about Spencer's needs," his mom Tanya explains. Once his parents left, counselors encouraged Spencer to try new things. He was worried that the mud pit would be icky and gross, but once he got into it, it was fun to do something unexpected. He also really liked playing Gaga Ball. He liked it so much, Spencer came home and taught his dad Jeff all about it. And eventually, his dad built their own portable Gaga Ball pit at home, to take to picnics and cub scouts. His parents have noticed changes in him. He's more thoughtful and less worried. His dad says, "Camp allowed our kids to get confidence." In the following years, Spencer has learned to kayak, cook, and make a fire. He hopes one day to put his personal experience to good use, being a counselor at camp. He's already recruited friends, many of them not church goers, to come with him to camp. "I'm not scared anymore," Spencer says confidently. "Now when I get nervous, I pray. Prayer helps when I have worrisome thoughts."
FAMILY CAMP MATTERS Odeen Family "When our oldest brought the camp brochure home, we were hesitant and worried about her getting homesick. We thought we'd do one year of family camp as an intro to camp. That was four years ago. It's a family tradition, and we hope it continues."
Dan grew up going to Pine Lake Camp and couldn't wait to share it with his family. Brenda grew up in a strict faith, and though she still believed in God, she lost her connection with the church as an adult. When Camryn, then 8, wanted to go to camp, Dan convinced Brenda that they could all go to camp together as a family. Here's what they say about camp now: Camryn, age 12 I like making friendship bracelets. Dad is good at that. And this year I'm coming to youth camp. Trenton, age 9 I like fishing and archery, and learning about Jesus. Like you should love your neighbor. And we hiked around the lake and saw a deer. Kelsey, age 6 I like everything. Swimming, fishing, crafts... and seeing my friend Laura. Brenda I think everyone would enjoy family camp. It helped us because of our mixed religious background. I accepted faith as my own at camp. I don't feel like an outsider at church anymore. Dan Camp has a powerful impact on the youth of our church. It's a great opportunity to explore faith without distraction.It's easy to put the cell phone down and focus. The peaceful relaxation makes it special. Any donation to camp is a good donation for the future.
At Pine Lake and Lake Lucerne Camps, we live by the guiding statement that we are building community, equipping disciples, and modeling care of creation in ways that show the love and grace of God. Every activity we do, every dollar we spend, ties back to these visions for our ministry.
BY THE NUMBERS
HOW OUR 2018 BUDGET PROVIDES MINISTRY
BUILDING COMMUNITY We help people connect with one another and better understand themselves by providing Christian hospitality. This includes the physical environment of camp â€” meals, cabins, gathering spaces. It also includes the time we spend with others when they are here, to help them process their experiences. We also build community by sharing our story, through Camp Sundays and intentional marketing efforts.
EQUIPPING DISCIPLES Giving people hands-on experience with spiritual practices enables them to integrate what they encounter at camp into their lives at home. The immersive environment of camps and retreats gives people time for prayer, communion, small groups, and more. This includes highly trained staff, curriculum, program planning, and program supplies.
MODELING CARE OF CREATION We believe it is critical to be good stewards of the earth God has created and the man-made resources we have as well. We have miles of trails that wind through several different habitats, which are home to some of Wisconsinâ€™s endangered species. This includes maintaining and repairing our existing facilities as well as planning for future land use.
WAYS TO GIVE Mail a check made out to WIUMCamps WIUMCamps 750 Windsor St., suite 203 Sun Prairie, WI 53590 Through Wisconsin UM Foundation stocks, real estate, insurance charitable gift annuities 1.888.903.9863/www.wumf.org Online at WIUMCamps.org/donate one-time gifts monthly automatic transfers