Archbishop Demetrios with campers at 10th Anniversary celebration at Camp Saint Paul.
Leadership 100 awarded the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese Department of Youth and Young Adult Ministries Camping Ministry program $270,000 for the fourth consecutive year. Grants of $30,000 were distributed to the Direct Archdiocesan District and to each Metropolis. The primary purpose of the grant is to enable Greek Orthodox youth who do not have the financial means to participate in a summer camp program. Some funding may also be applied to programming, supplies, transportation, youth protection training and background checks of staff members. The program was once again in full swing across the country in the summer of 2014, making it possible for numerous young people to attend camp programs.
As a condition of the grant, the Department of Youth and Young Adult Ministries and Camping Ministries surveys the Youth and Young Adult Ministries Directors of the Direct Archdiocesan District and Metropolis camps and reports on the use of funds and compliance with Leadership 100 requirements. Rev. Fr. Jason Roll, National Director of the Department, provided the following highlights:
Metropolis of Atlanta
Five one-week sessions of Summer Camp for teens entering 6th grade through 12th grade in the fall of 2014 were offered, providing 23 scholarships for deserving teens from thirteen parishes. Seventeen of these youth have never had the opportunity to attend camp previously. In addition, travel assistance was provided for 10 Young Adults to serve as counselors – four of them from Hellenic College/Holy Cross – along with providing the means for all Young Adult Counselors and Staff to participate at no cost.
Metropolis of Boston
One hundred percent of the funds received by the grant were used for the Metropolis of Boston Camp Scholarship Program. Additionally, to cover the remaining scholarship requests from families the camp hosts an annual golf tournament as well as receiving support from private family foundations.
Metropolis of Chicago
The majority of the funds were used as scholarships for campers who were in financial need of assistance. Through the Fanari Camp program and the St. Mary’s camp program, 70% of the grant was used this past summer specifically as full scholarships and partial scholarships, 13% was used to offset the cost of transportation for campers from the southern region of the Metropolis, who have to travel over eight hours to get to camp, 1.5% went for staff background checks and 10% of the grant money went to programming costs. This year there were 483 campers and over 120 staff and clergy.
Metropolis of Denver
Camp Emmanuel was held June 8-21, 2014, at Manzano Mountain Retreat near Albuquerque, New Mexico. Online registration was once again made available for camper participants. Campers attending both sessions totaled 211, with the majority receiving full or partial scholarships. Assistance was also provided for campers’ travel and staff registration and travel assistance.
Metropolis of Detroit
The Metropolis of Detroit made scholarship money available to anyone who demonstrated a need for financial assistance to attend camp. This was communicated to the Metropolis Clergy, to the Parish Councils, to the Metropolis Clergy Laity gatherings in the Youth Ministries report, to the directors/administrators of each camp, and to families through camp promotional materials. The summer camp programs served over 500 campers in 3 camps in the Metropolis, the Metropolis of Detroit Summer Camp, St. Nicholas Camp, and St. Timothy Camp.
Direct Archdiocesan District
As the largest Greek Orthodox camp in the country, Camp Saint Paul celebrated its 10th anniversary. In the summer of 2014, it served over 620 campers, the best year ever, and surpassing previous years’ attendance. Many of these young people were first time campers. The Leadership 100 grant enabled the Camp to offer scholarships to families that were otherwise unable to send their children. There were a number of families in need, whose children were greatly impacted by the program in a very positive way.
Metropolis of New Jersey
All of the grant money received from Leadership 100 was used this past summer
for three main areas: offering scholarships to those in need, covering the expenses incurred for staff and offering a discount across the board to all of our campers as we attempt to keep our registration costs as low as possible. The 2014 Summer Camp accommodated over 280 campers over the course of Three 1 Week sessions at Camp Good Shepherd.
Metropolis of Pittsburgh
The primary goal each year is to enable each and every child who wants to attend Summer Camp but does not have the financial means to participate. As a result, Summer Camp numbers were up almost 10%. This year, in addition to scholarship assistance, the Metropolis needed assistance to offer more in depth training to its multiple week Staff. Funding from Leadership 100 enabled the Metropolis to underwrite the costs of pre and post camp training and debriefing. The pre camp training helped tremendously with the program overall. During the post camp debriefing, suggestions were offered to enhance the camp ministry even more.
Metropolis of San Francisco
This year the Metropolis of San Francisco utilized 100% of the $30,000 grant that it was offered from L100. There was an increase in the number of scholarships requested, so more partial scholarships were awarded to more campers, 56 scholarships for 50% support, 3 scholarships for 75% support, and 19 scholarships for 100% support, for a total of 78 scholarships. The total amount of scholarships was $24,207. There was also a need to help offset program costs, $5,793 was allocated to support growing program needs. With camper scholarships and program costs, 100% of the $30,000 grant was utilized. With a total of 318 campers, the L100 scholarship recipient campers represented 25% of total campers this summer.
The fourth year of the Leadership 100 Camping grant has provided an incentive for innovative changes in the administration and operations of all camps while increasing the number of campers now able to attend, according to Fr. Jason, with requests from all Metropolises to continue the program.