Summer is off to a great start at GiGi’s Playhouse Raleigh–
On June 12th we kicked off our first week of summer camp program- leading us off were our Warriors. We had eight young adults 18+ join us for paddle boats, holding baby goats, feeding alpaca llamas and horses. We learned about our National Parks at Marbles Museum and toured a farm and learned about how honey is made by an expert bee keeper; we finished the week by bowling at Cinabowl in a fierce competition by all. The highlight of the week was our ribbon cutting ceremony celebrating a year of GiGi’s being open in our community.
Each week of camp consisted of different age groups and age appropriate activities. We established community relationships with Marbles Kids Museum, Made Authentic Goods, Dj’s Berry Patch, School of Rock Cary, North Carolina Museum of Science, Cinabowl Grille Park Side Commons, Lunch/outdoor activities at Bond Park and Putt Putt at Alligators in our shopping center. All of these relationships built provided opportunities for our participants that may have been a first time experience!
We had a total of five weeks of camp with each week serving a different age group. Our camps started in June and ran until the end of July providing a camp experience for over 45 campers, some of which this was the first time ever to go CAMP!!! All of this would of never of happened without our dedicated volunteers, over 65 volunteers gave up a part of their summer to help our campers have a great time socializing, trying new things and most importantly having FUN!!!
Thank you to everyone who has sponsored a camper, who volunteered to give our participants this camp experience, and to the community relationships we have built with the organizations that gave us free/discounted admission! Below are statements made my parents/friends/camp counselors about how this Summer Camp experience has impacted our wonderful kiddos!
**One of our campers has never been without a family member or cap worker and hesitated on coming to camp. After she was greeted by one of our volunteers who talked about Frozen her favorite movie she connected with her and joined our circle.
**A parent told us before her daughter went to sleep every night she would say CAMP tomorrow right?
**Last week we had a camper that would not communicate on the first day and wasn’t too fond of smiling! The minute he went on the paddle boats at Bond Park he started to smile and by the next day he was singing our camp songs.
**One of our campers dad said that before bed every night his son would get his things ready for camp (which he has never done before) and would wake up at 6am thinking he could leave early for camp.
There are not enough words to thank our camp directors, volunteers, and community for helping make this experience possible. We have seen such growth, joy, confidence and independence in our campers. We are eagerly planning for summer 2018!! #strongertogether