The New Year gives us an excuse to stay up late, dance a little, and eat a lot. It also invites us to imagine what the future could hold. In the face of so many challenges—from the ongoing pandemic to the effects of climate change—having a strong vision for the future is essential. We need to know what we’re working toward and why we’re working so hard. We need a reason to believe.
This past year, Camp Fire has been reframing how we talk about our organization. We’ve been shifting our focus from what we’re doing to why we are doing it. Our new vision statement anchors us in that long view. It helps us look ahead. It gives us motivation to keep going when we hit hard days or get bogged down in logistics and details. It reminds us what we can achieve together:
We envision a world where all young people thrive and have equitable opportunities for self-discovery, community connection, and engagement with nature.
Let’s break down that vision into its parts:
All young people find their spark, lift their voice, and discover who they are.
If you’ve been around Camp Fire for the past decade or so, you’ve heard about sparks: They are the talents, interests, commitments and qualities that give us energy and purpose. Knowing what makes you light up is a key part of self-discovery. Camp Fire wants to help young people not only discover their sparks but learn to use their voice to actively pursue and share those sparks in the real world. We want a future full of engaged, passionate young people who are confident in who they are and what they have to offer.
Read about Self-Discovery in action:
- 15 Questions to Spark a Sparks Conversation
- How Camp Fire Staff Build Youth-Driven Programs
- From Camp Fire to Mission Control: NASA Chief Flight Director Holly Riding’s Alumni Story
All young people find, build, and contribute to their community; they develop meaningful relationships with supportive adults and peers; they feel seen, heard, accepted, supported, and affirmed for who they are today, and who they will be in the future.
Camp Fire sees young people as an integral part of our clubs, camps, neighborhoods and cities. We don’t exist to serve young people. We exist to connect them—to the outdoors, to others, and to themselves. (In fact, that’s our mission statement!) Camp Fire wants to help young people build lasting relationships with the people around them. We want a future full of connected, secure young people who know where and how they belong.
Read about Community Connection in action:
- Developmental Relationships—are we cultivating them?
- Inclusion Statements: Why specificity matters
- Five Ways to Help Kids Belong
All young people experience the power and awe of the outdoors; they learn to respect, love, and care for our world.
Camp Fire wants a future full of—we’ll, we want a future, period. That’s going to take young people who understand that we are nature. If nature is in trouble, so are we. We imagine a future full of compassionate young people who know how to make a positive, transformative impact on the environment.
Read about Engagement with Nature in action:
- Exploring Innovative Nature Engagement Practices
- Celebrate Earth Day: Work for environmental justice
- Meet Quincy Henry: Coffee roaster, environmental justice seeker, and youth advocate
Camp Fire’s new vision paints a picture of a world where kids know who they are and how important they are to their communities and their ecosystems. Want to help us build this beautiful future?