Three years ago, Gabriel’s father attended a Camp Fire focus group and shared that he was struggling with Gabriel. “He’s not into sports like most boys his age. He really doesn’t like anything but video games,” he said. “But a friend of our family, Gabriel’s godmother, invited him to come to Camp Fire, and for the first time he is making friends his own age and starting to do things other than video games. I can see it is already making a big difference in him. I’m so grateful.”
Gabriel freely admits that he was on a roller coaster at school before Camp Fire. Now “I focus on Camp Fire activities. Camp Fire is kind of like my hobby, my spark. I have discovered how much I love the outdoors…It made me realize I can keep going and looking for new things constantly.”

What other differences are there? Gabriel now volunteers to help in many Camp Fire programs. He is comfortable with adults who have found that they can count on him to come through. Gabriel is no longer a boy in danger of dropping out of school. He is a young man of promise: he knows what to look for in friends, he is excited about college, he is proud of what he is becoming.

 

Gabriel recently announced, “I’ve applied to ten colleges and some of them are out of state. I’m so excited. I never would have done that without Camp Fire.”