150 Children Provided Scholarships to Attend Overnight Summer Camp in the Poconos!
Mayor Jim Kenney and city officials, as well as public and private partners launched the 2022 Camp Philly program. Camp Philly is a partnership between Philadelphia Parks & Recreation and YMCA Camp Speers that will provide an opportunity for children between the ages of 8 and 12 to experience the independence of camping in a rural setting, worlds away from their everyday urban environment.
Beginning August 15, 2022, CAMP Philly will run two one-week sessions at Camp Speers YMCA. Opened in 1948, Camp Speers was the first ever racially integrated YMCA overnight camp in America. The 1,100 acre campground includes a private 42-acre lake and 400 acres of conservation easement property dedicated to education and wildlife preserve.
“It is so important for young people to have the opportunity to experience the beauty and serenity of nature outside the confines of the city,” said Mayor Jim Kenney. “I am grateful to our partners for offering young people this extraordinary opportunity to expand their minds and inspire them in immeasurable ways.”
The City and the Greater Philadelphia YMCA worked together to raise awareness and funding to support Camp Philly. Community partners, business leaders, and individual donors helped to fund the program. Camp Philly 2022 is presented by Team Clean and Bank of America.
“We are committed to helping advance economic mobility by supporting initiatives like Camp Philly and expanding opportunities – especially for youth,” said Donna Allie, President and CEO, Team Clean. “We are thrilled to support Philadelphia Parks & Recreation and Camp Speers YMCA, and are excited to watch these young people grow through new opportunities like this."
The funds raised will enable campers to receive all camp necessities for free. Those necessities include, camp accommodations, daily meals and snacks, transportation, programming, camp counselors, supervisory and support staff, program amenities, shirts, sleeping bags and toiletries.
”We are excited to partner with the city on such an important initiative,” said Shaun Elliott, President and CEO, of the Greater Philadelphia YMCA. “There is no better investment than in the lives of children. Getting kids outside and connected to each other again is of utmost importance. They have lost a lot in the last few years and this camp helps them begin to not only rebuild, but to grow..”
Under the guidance of positive adult role models, campers will participate in a wide range of interactive programming, like archery, horseback riding, drama lessons and swimming, developing key skills such as decision making, creativity, confidence, and teamwork in the process. Through these activities designed to expose them to new concepts, CAMP Philly participants will grow beyond their current frame of reference and develop more complex ideas about the world around them.
“We are very grateful to partner with the Greater Philadelphia YMCA,” said Commissioner Kathryn Ott Lovell. “Together we will give these campers a summer they’ll never forget.”
Philadelphia Parks & Recreation: (PPR) advances the prosperity of the city and the progress of its people through intentional and sustained stewardship of nearly 10,200 acres of public land and waterways as well as through hundreds of safe, stimulating recreation, environmental and cultural centers. PPR promotes the well-being and growth of the city’s residents by connecting them to the natural world around them, to each other and to fun, physical and social opportunities. PPR is responsible for the upkeep of historically significant Philadelphia events and specialty venues, and works collaboratively with communities and organizations in leading capital projects and the introduction of inventive programming. To learn more about Philadelphia Parks & Recreation, visit us at www.phila.gov/parksandrec, and follow @philaparkandrec on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or Tumblr.
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