Our Team Member Kendra Hassell spent time volunteering with organizations such as Habitat of Humanity in Central Florida, as well as Camp Boggy Creek where her and Amanda Thacker have been regulars since 2013.
In her own words, Kendra describes this experience and why Camp Boggy Creek is so special to her:
Camp Boggy Creek is a member of the SeriousFun Children’s Network founded by Paul Newman. This camp offers a free, medically-sound environment for children with serious illnesses to enjoy the experiences of a traditional camp without their medical conditions restricting them in any way.
The theme of Camp Boggy Creek is “The Joy of Yes”, which encompasses what the camp is all about. When these children are camping, they participate in activities which normally aren't possible. For example, a child that is wheelchair bound would be able to participate in “Boating and Fishing” because of the specialized paddle boats allowing them to maneuver the boat using their arms instead of their legs. I’ve witnessed children considered by society to be non-verbal sing their hearts out at the camp Talent Show. I’ve seen a child with Spina Bifida shoot her first arrow in Archery.
Camp Boggy Creek is 100% reliant on volunteers and donations, keeping the camp free for children and families. Newman’s Own is a familiar household brand, but many are unaware that 100% of those proceeds go to funding SeriousFun camps like this one.
This camp has brought me so much joy, awareness and appreciation. Volunteering at this camp even inspired me to learn another language, ASL (American Sign Language), after being paired with a deaf camper in 2017. If you’ve contemplated volunteering in an environment like this before, I strongly encourage you to go for it.
I’ve gotten more out of my time volunteering at Camp Boggy Creek than I had ever imagined I would.