This post was submitted by our Jr. High Dean, Ketia Policape.
While checking campers in upon their arrival, my heart overflowed with joy when I read the “How did you hear about camp?” section on two camper registration forms. The parent replied, “Family Tradition.” You see, their parents and I were junior, junior high, and senior campers together here at Camp Ithiel. After camp was over, I received a text message from my childhood friend saying, “Thank you, Ketia! The kids said they had a blast!!! Hope all is well and I hope to see you when you’re in Miami, ok!”What’s more, I received calls from parents thanking us for the care and attention we provided their children whether it was for a dietary restriction, headache, homesickness, or basic even basic safety practices we follow as a camp.
On the first night, I enjoyed convincing and eventually welcoming a late camper into our fold. She arrives well after dinner and get acquainted games, just before evening campfire vespers. Dad just happened to drive by a few hours after camp began to inquire about registering his daughter for the week. We even had a camper that was adamant about not wanting to be at camp during checkin. After a great dinner, meeting his counselor and cabin mates and a good vespers campfire with s’mores of course, he was sold. He enjoyed himself! He even found puppy love. LOL!
As Dean this week, I gained valuable and transferable skills such as First Aid, problem-solving, scheduling, risk management, addressing behaviors that break our shared camp covenant, supervising 6 counselors, 7 C.I.T.’s, 51 campers and my own small fry. Oh, and that’s right! You read it correctly. We welcomed and housed 51 campers this week. A recording-breaking number for Jr. High Camp. It was challenging yet rewarding.
To speak on the friendships that are formed here, I leave you with a letter that never made it to the recipient:
Hey, Cordelia you always make me happy. You even play with my hair <3 You are the my very great friend
I Love you
have a great summer
Ps I’ll miss you so much!
May God bless you