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Letter from the Director: Spring 2024



With the birds chirping and flowers budding, I’m writing this letter to you with summer on my mind. This year has been a time of growth and adjustment for our leadership as we’ve settled into our new roles: Me, the Executive Director; Gavin, the new Summer Camp Director; and Jenny and Jesse, our Assistant Directors overseeing the new Leadership Centre and Nature School. Aya (and Emily) are responsible for raising funds. 


Having this full year-round leadership team has brought me immense joy. I witness the incredible work being done during our weekly meetings. I can’t begin to express the pride I feel in this team, having seen them all grow up at camp. They are talented, kind, and deeply committed to our mission. 


One of my major focuses over the past 10 months has been on site renovations. Thanks to the generous support from The Rotary Club of Toronto, we were able to fully winterize and upgrade four staff cabins, ensuring they're equipped to accommodate our growing year-round programs. Additionally, with funding from the United Way, we embarked on an enormous initiative to remove invasive species from our property.


I am excited to announce we’re installing a high ropes course this spring, marking the realization of a dream! But what is perhaps even more thrilling, is that it was fully funded by revenue generated from our Leadership Centre (school group programming). This initiative, along with other projects like updating our septic system, underscores our commitment to providing exciting, safe, and enriching experiences for our campers.


We've continued to offer incredible programming this winter. My favourite, as always, was our winter weekend for the leadership group. We had almost 30 teens and young adults in Bancroft this past January for a weekend of winter fun. They arrived during the few days where we were gifted with a fresh batch of snow, and we took full advantage - snowshoeing, GT racing, and simply enjoying each other's company in the great outdoors.


Our Nature school has also been operating on site, year round. Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays each week have been packed with outdoor fun and play based learning. March Break Camp was special for me because with over 30 kids on site, we asked our Summer Camp Staff to help lead Nature School that week. It has been wonderful to offer more employment and learning opportunities to our summer camp staff, as our programs expand into the school year. There are still spaces available in our Nature School’s Day Camp. If you’d like to learn more you can check out our instagram or learn more on our website


In anticipation of the upcoming summer, Gavin has been working hard to hire staff, and  almost all of them are returning or are recent graduates of our LIT/JC Leadership Program. We’re thrilled to be welcoming more campers this summer as we continue to build capacity after the pandemic. I’m looking forward to being on site for both mom’s camps, and nothing but excited and proud to witness Gavin and the team carry forward cherished traditions while also forging their own unique path. 


As I close this letter, I’m going to do something I don’t typically do in these updates and ask for your help: The first way you can help, is of course by making a donation. Our summer camp fees are on a sliding scale, and we don’t turn anyone away for financial reasons. This summer marks our most ambitious fundraising goal to date. The families we serve and agencies we work with are finding themselves under enormous financial pressures. As such, we are anticipating less registration fee funds, necessitating more donations. Particularly exciting is that our Nature School and Leadership Centre (school groups) serve as revenue generating streams. Income from these programs is used to offset administrative costs, ensuring your donations are used directly to help send kids to camp. You can make a donation here


The second is by lending a helping hand at our annual Spring Cleaning on May 4th. Join us for a day of cleaning in preparation for the summer ahead. While our site has been in use all year, and is in the best shape it's ever been, there are still cobwebs to be cleaned, brush to be raked and general love needed to the facility as a whole. You can learn more or RSVP here. I hope to see you there!


My final request is that you tell a teacher about our Leadership Centre. Just 75 minutes from Toronto, we welcome single and multi-day school groups of all ages (K-12), with all revenues generated for our core mission of supporting children, youth and families facing socioeconomic barriers. Our Leadership Centre for school groups is in its first year, and we need your help spreading the word. You can find out more about the Leadership Centre here.


It’s been a thrilling year, and I’m so looking forward to seeing what the future holds. Thank you to everyone who has been on this exciting journey at Camp Scugog. I appreciate you so much.


As always, I’d love to hear from you. Please feel free to reach out with any questions you may have, or just to say hi. 


Yours in camping,


Dana










Pictured above are LITs, JCs, and staff enjoying GT Racing and winter weekend fun in Bancroft, ON.




Pictured above are two Bumblebee students at Nature School, exploring Camp Scugog's ecosystem. Left; young boy inspecting findings from the stream. Right; young girl showing off a garden snake.




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1 Yorum


Heath Cooper
Heath Cooper
18 Nis

My heart is happy hearing about the progress that Camp Scugog is undergoing. I have the warmest memories of my two summers spent working at this magical facility. I am Camp.


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