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LTE: Support of Overnight Camps

To Whom It May Concern, 

The facts. 
I. Overnight
During overnight camp, we go, we stay for two weeks, we leave. We don’t leave during that time period of two weeks. Think of it as a two-week-long quarantine from the public. We don’t go anywhere, so there’s a very low chance of catching a disease. The counselors are smart enough to take safety precautions so that they don’t catch anything. And also, since we are younger, there’s still a very low chance of catching the virus. 
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II. Daycamp
Day campers come back from camp to their homes every night. They leave camp and go in public, which gives a much higher chance of catching something. They’re around more people and exposed to more things that are circulating around outside of camp and can possibly bring it in. It’s much more dangerous for people’s health when they’re leaving and coming back. 

Overnight camp is like no other. I love it unconditionally, indefinitely. It’s my home where I can be myself and let myself be loved. The best, unbreakable relationships have started at camp. Camp formed me into who I am today, taught me the lessons I have learned and helped me through the worst times. This crisis is one of those worst times. Camp is the one good thing we could still hold onto. It kept us alive inside. Without it, we feel lost, like there’s nothing left. Just emptiness and an overwhelming sense of pain and dread. I don’t know what I would do without it. Without the magic of camp, there is nothing left for us. It saved us. It helped us. Because of this, we need overnight camp more than ever. For my camp scholarship, I wrote a letter. 

"I love camp. 
Camp is the place that’s made me who I am today, and without it, I wouldn’t have learned the lessons I’ve learned, or have the relationships I have. Camp isn’t about winning Golden Broom or hiking Pt. Mountain, but it’s about the relationships we form. We start as strangers and end as a family. Who would I be to give up my chosen family? Things may become chaotic, but the magic of camp is always there, and always will be. No matter what."

Now it just feels like the magic of camp is gone. And we need it more than ever. 
My counselors told me that day campers don’t have the love and appreciation for camp as we do. It isn’t as much as a need, or a home. 
Please, consider opening overnight instead of day camp. It’s better for everybody, health-wise, and emotionally. I don’t know what’s going to happen, but I’ve been holding out hope for this long. That hope will not shatter easily. So please, just consider it and hear my voice.

GMA


** editor note: My daughter wrote this on her own to give the elected officials a different perspective of the importance of Overnight Camp = plus to show a different angle on which camp is less likely going to spread COVID - 19. 

Attached a COVID - 19 camp plan for an Overnight Camp. 


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