The past eight months have been tumultuous and uncertain. With the Fall school-year approaching, COVID-19 still at large, and the 2020 election around the corner, everything continues to feel up in the air.
However, one thing we have learned through this pandemic is that youth development organizations, like Camp Fire, are essential to the wellbeing of young people and their families — especially during crises.
During 2018-2019, Camp Fire designed and implemented a new “Camp Fire Journey” that emphasizes the core experiences every young person will encounter in our programs, what they learn, and the long-term societal impacts of those experiences.
Our powerful youth experiences?
- Experiential learning in, for, or about the community or outdoors
- Diverse, equitable environments that are inclusive of all young people
- Adults who prioritize youth
- Spark discovery (interest exploration)
- Peer-to-peer engagement
- Goal Management
These lead to essential skills and mindsets every young person needs to thrive now and in the future, like positive identity, social skills, contribution, and more.
Through a substantial network-wide survey and evaluation process, we complete assessments on our programs to learn what we are doing right, areas we can improve, and have a better understanding of who we are serving in our programs and at our councils as a whole. We call this the People & Impact Report. In this report, you can see how many youth and families we served, what type of programs we offered, how many trainings our staff completed, and much more. And numbers aren’t the only thing you will find – you will not only see who we serve and what we do but also, why it matters.
We serve youth in many different settings, including out-of-school time programs (club, school break camp, before and after school, etc.), in-school programs, teen and service leadership programs, and environmental and camp programs.
In the summer of 2019, 36,560 youth attended a resident camp, day camp, or environmental education program, instilling in youth a desire to care for our planet as well as a much-needed break from screentime.
Over the past year, Camp Fire partnered with over 900 community organizations and offered community-based training to more than 10,646 youth and adults in areas such as social-emotional learning for youth, supporting LGBTQ+ youth and adult trainings, professionalizing youth work, mental health first aid and more.
Camp Fire Walla Walla
Volunteers contributed over 240,000 hours of service to Camp Fire and the community. This time is equivalent to approximately 130 full-time positions – donating the equivalent of more than $6 million. Camp Fire staff also completed professional development courses, training, and certifications all across the country to ensure that we are providing the best quality programs possible.
2020 certainly looks different than any year previous, so with virtual camps and alternative programming, our next People & Impact report might look a little different. But our main goal will never change: supporting young people on their journey to self-discovery. We’re here for you no matter what.
Want to know more? Check out the full report.