Eleven students from Grand Valley State University in Allendale, Michigan signed up for an Alternative Break service trip, bringing them across the Midwest to join in the craziness and excitement of Winter Camp at Camp Friendship January 2-7. Led by a fantastic student leader, these students walked through our doors and have been leaving us in awe ever since.
I had the privilege of chatting with a few members of the group as they prepared to head out on an afternoon bowling adventure with a group of campers, and the thoughtful comments I received sent warmth all the way to my chilly toes. From reflections on the nervous anticipation they arrived with to the immense impact each camper has had on their personal journeys in just a few short days; each moment they shared with me affirmed the purpose of our mission.
"I was totally nervous coming into the week, but being with these campers changes everything. This population has so much passion and love to share. I've learned the power of "yes". Saying "yes, you can do this or that activity" makes their day. We're giving them that opportunity."
We couldn't say it better ourselves. GVSU students:
thank you. Thank you for saying yes. Thank you for being a part of providing life-changing experiences to the campers we serve. Thank you for showing up despite the nerves and "what are we getting ourselves into??" moments and for teaching us all a powerful lesson in the sweetness of sacrifice. We can't wait to have you back this summer!
Written by Maureen O'Connor