When Julie Carter and her son, Jessie, drove in to Cornerstone Campground this past summer for their first Victory Lane Camp experience, they were not expecting the big welcome they received. “Look, they’re cheering for us!” Jessie exclaimed as they began their week with an uplifting and memorable moment.
This “VIP reception” at the start of camp is just one of the countless aspects the Camp Programming Pit Crew coordinates. Beginning nearly a year in advance, this crew plans virtually everything that happens at camp: scheduling with meal missionaries, planning and leading activities for the week, finding RVs and places for families to sleep, registration, disability awareness, and even training Backyard Mission Trip families.
This group of volunteers give their time and energy to help make camp a memorable experience for everyone. The 2016 crew includes Natasha Hamilton, Tiffanny Youngquist, Paige Fischer, Dusti Dobbs, Zonda Ketchum, Dara Upchurch, and Cindy Cook.
Victory Lane Camp CEO Brett Fischer describes them as, “a group of caring adults that care about families with children with disabilities and want to make the community a better place.” He went on to share, “Victory Lane Camp is working and succeeding in ministering to new families because of their sacrifices.”
The Camp Programming Pit Crew is especially skilled in adapting. They begin with a skeleton of a plan for their vision of the time at camp. Once the information for the campers comes in, they get creative and work with therapists to customize plans to fit the needs of the specific families involved.
This past summer, both camps happened during extremely hot weeks. Sensory issues are amplified for most children who have disabilities, which makes the summer heat something that could hold them back from having a good time. The Camp Programming Pit Crew adapted the many of the activities, changing them into water games or moving activities into air conditioned areas.
For example, a family kickball game transitioned to include small pools for bases and sprinklers so that everyone could play while staying cool. Jessie Carter claimed his spot on one of the bases and was able to be engaged in the game instead of being bothered by the heat.
Quite literally, this pit crew is made up of game-changers. From the very first welcome cheers until the last camper leaves, they are impacting the lives of families connected with Victory Lane Camp.
The Camp Programming Pit Crew is just one of many pit crews that are building the Victory Lane Camp community not just at camp, but throughout the year. Find out how you can be part of this team of game-changers by sending an e-mail to [email protected].